The Creative Aging Morning Tea hosted by the New England Regional Arts Museum (NERAM) was held on Wednesday this week. This was the first in a series of events designed to promote the importance of artistic and social interaction for the older residents of the community.
Despite the chilly 9 degrees outside, 20 people enrolled for the free event and were kept warm with an interactive art workshop, music and a morning tea. Local artist, Kerry Gulliver started the morning with a workshop teaching a visual arts technique, Frottage. Following on was a performance from the Wild Women of Armidale, filling the gallery with fun, quirky and clever lyrics and music, finishing with an Art Storeroom Tour led by the NERAM Director, Robert Heather.
The purpose of the event was to involve local seniors in a safe and creative environment, and encourage people to maintain their health and wellbeing.
The event sponsor, Home Nursing Group, believes that maintaining a strong community connection is important to people who want to remain independent, and at home.
There was a broad range of people at different aging stages, with most having personal experience with home nursing services and the crucial role they play in the lives of the client and their surrounding families. There were also others who understood the importance of advance planning.
One common goal throughout the group was to maintain an active life in order to remain independent and healthy for as long as possible.
Home Nursing Group was able to provide respite care for Chris Laurie’s partner so she was able to attend the mid-week event. Her partner receives social support and personal care services. Chris herself recently suffered a stroke and is looking for a new creative outlet. Her main hobby and passion for most of her life was being a wood churner. Chris is now looking for alternative creative outlets as she is feeling apprehensive about using machinery after her stroke.
Although Joe Lankester jokes that he was only there for the ‘free cuppa’, he and his partner, Susan Fittler, love getting involved in new activities around the area. Joe is originally from The Hague, the Netherlands and moved out to Australia with his family in 1952.
Joe has a jam packed weekly schedule going to lawn bowls twice a week, and tenpin bowling once a week. They also attend dance classes twice a month. They groove to Old Style and New Vogue.
They want to remain as healthy as possible for as long as they can but know that eventually, they will require home nursing assistance.
Stay tuned for more information about the next creative aging event at NERAM.
For more photos of the event, check out the Armidale Express coverage at http://www.armidaleexpress.com.au/story/4718398/youre-never-too-old-to-get-creative/?cs=471