Supporting people living longer in their homes as they age not only costs less but allows people to live their lives independently and with dignity.
Twee Shire Council is running eight programs to assist people to maintain their independence and stay in their own homes more safely and for longer. The programs are offering both face-to-face and online options depending on peoples needs. They are available for people 65 years or older (50 years or older for Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people), or 50 years or older (45 years or older for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people) and on a low income, homeless, or at risk of being home.
Council’s Coordinator Community Services Joanne Watters said many seniors in the Tweed live alone and are more vulnerable to feelings of isolation.
‘Providing opportunities for seniors to connect with other people in their own communities can be invaluable and these programs aim to give participants a number of active, educational, physical or creative programs to get involved in,’ Ms Watters said.
The programs will be held across a number locations around the Tweed, including the Tweed Heads South Community Centre, Tweed Heads Civic and Cultural Centre, Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre, Tweed Regional Aquatic Centres (Kingscliff and Murwillumbah) and the Tweed Regional Museum. Details about each program are listed below:
- Shop Don’t Drop – Engages participants with technology to learn skills to shop, pay bills and socially engage online.
- Stand Together – Guides participants in simple exercises which increases understanding of the risks of falls and how to prevent them.
- MisterChef – This program is for men who have little or no cooking experience and have recently started cooking for themselves and in some cases, their partner.
- Dementia Music Therapy – Dementia music therapy is for people with dementia and their carers to engage in musical activities designed to improve balance and walking speed, as well as reducing social withdrawal, anxiety or aggression.
- Art and Dementia Friends – This educational and social program aspires to reconnect people living with dementia to their sense of identity, and raise awareness of and reduce the social stigma associated with dementia.
- Stretch Your Mind – Designed to be fun and stimulate memory, concentration and creativity. Participants learn that by challenging your brain as you age, your brain can become more powerful.
- Mature and Determined – Introduction to movement and gentle exercise in the pool. A new program that uses stretching, breathing and Tai Chai moves that will help with relaxation, body awareness, stress and mobility of mind and body.
- Cultural Connection – Provides participants an opportunity to be included in interpreted/interactive tours of the Tweed Regional Museum’s collection to provoke memories and story sharing and social connection. Commencing April/May 2020.
The programs are funded by the Australian Government Department of Health, Commonwealth Home Support Programme (CHSP).
All programs are either free or at a subsidised cost and include morning or afternoon tea. More information and details for how to register for each program are available at www.tweed.nsw.gov.au/HomeSupportPrograms or if you don’t have computer access, call (02) 6670 2400.