Story & photo Eve Jeffery
Last week seniors across the far north coast took time out from their increasingly busy lives to celebrate NSW Seniors Week with a myriad of activities – everything from learning new technologies to looking after their health to passing along wisdom to today’s youth and just plain old having a good time.
Seniors Week is an annual NSW government event program presented by Ageing Disability and Home Care (ADHC). It is the largest celebration for people over 60 in the southern hemisphere. The theme for NSW Seniors Week 2012 was Live Life! Seniors Week aims to encourage seniors to actively participate in the community and, with about 900 free or specially discounted events held for seniors across the state, there is something for everyone.
The event is enjoyed by thousands of our community’s elders every year and provides seniors with opportunities to remain active, healthy and independent throughout the ageing process; learn, develop and educate themselves at any age; develop and expand their social networks and share their wealth of wisdom and breadth of life experience with younger generations.
Though bad weather engulfed much of the 2012 event and kept some seniors away, many of the activities were well attended and the area’s elders had a jolly good time.
Ballina celebrated the occasion all week long with a wide variety of activities including a mobile phone workshop, a river cruise on the Richmond, as well as a laughter workshop. Local entertainers the Merry Makers put on a performance for more than 200 seniors at the Ballina RSL on Wednesday.
Throughout the week, Byron Shire had classes in using computers, seed saving, and bridge, and information sessions for grandparent carers and interesting peeks into the worlds of marine radio operators, the Mullumbimby Community Art Gallery and Zumba while Tweed Shire elders were invited to join in a bus tour to Stradbroke Island, open week with the Tweed Gold Coast Family History and Heritage Association, exercise classes and introduction to the joys of e-books. The Tweed also had a lot of physical activities in their Seniors Week calendar with a twilight coastal walk, aquarobics, lifeball (similar to netball) and a sailing day.
Lismore seniors had the opportunity to go back in time to share the wisdom of hindsight and life lessons learnt with the next generation by writing a postcard for exhibition in the ‘Letter-to-my-16-year-old-self’ workshop.
Image: Seniors of the future Kain Browning and Christian McDowell get a few agricultural pointers from Sue Disney at the Mullumbimby Community Gardens.