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Rotary heroes head to Halcyon

May 28, 2021

Working couple Heather and Ian Yarker’s advice to people contemplating making the move to Halcyon is simple: Just do it!

The pair, who still work fulltime and are active volunteers for Rotary, have just become owners of Halcyon Greens’s 300th home and have settled in quickly, taking advantage of the lifestyle the community offers.

“It’s not a retirement community, it’s a lifestyle community and it’s very, very different and you see that when you visit competitors,” Heather said.

“When younger people visit they say ‘we want to be in here, we want these facilities, we want that friendship.’”

Ian said the community was perfect for working people, as the lifestyle and facilities made it a pleasure to return to every evening, without the burden of any maintenance.

“When you come through that beautiful entrance past the manicured landscape and the facilities and then on through the botanic gardens in front of the beautiful homes which have got proud owners who almost come out and wave to you as you pass, it’s compelling,” he said.

“Just let it happen. Just do it. It will work for you, it will wrap itself around you and you become part of the fibre of Halcyon Greens.”

The couple have both been awarded an Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for their volunteer work, which includes helping build school dormitories in Papua New Guinea, working with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to teach villagers malaria prevention, leading teams to assist in countries such as Fiji, Thailand, Solomon Islands and Indonesia and of course helping people here in Australia.

Their nomadic volunteer lifestyle had led them to live in a caravan for the past seven years, spending time on their daughter’s Gold Coast hinterland property while also travelling around Australia and the world.

Heather, who earned the nickname “Hurricane Heather” from her husband for her energy and enthusiasm said they decided to move to Halcyon because they were ready for their “next adventure”.

“We’d been to other resorts and had a look, but the facilities weren’t there that we thought we wanted to use together and enjoy together without going outside the community,” she said.

Ian added: “You can feel the master planning when you walk around the community, especially if you’ve got any experience or background in that area and that for me is one of the most engaging aspects of the whole community here.

“It’s not a commercial activity, it’s actually about people for people and the result is engaging without you realising that and I find it has exceeded our expectations.

“We’re absolutely amazed at how enthusiastically and how quickly we’ve been welcomed and brought into the group that are already here, it really is something special.”

Heather said their neighbour had delivered a batch of freshly baked cookies to their home the other night.

“She dropped them off and said ‘you’re always working or out helping someone, next time I’m going to make you a dinner.””

“It really has been remarkable.”