AS we get older, staying social is essential for good health.
And Tasmania has the oldest population in Australia, with nearly 20 per cent of the population aged 65 or older.
A lack of social connectedness has been linked with poorer health, especially among ageing communities.
Feeling socially connected to others can be an important predictor of health and longevity – spending a lot of time at home on your own may not be good for your health.
But older residents of the greater Hobart area can access a free program that provides vital social and recreational activities in a supportive environment, while also providing respite for carers.
Run by health and community services provider EACH and based at Creek Road in Lenah Valley, the Social Activity Group program provides a friendly space for older adults at risk of social isolation to come together, make new friends and enjoy a variety of structured activities including live music, art, short outings, luncheons, guest speakers, games and gentle physical exercise.
EACH expects more than 100 people to access the service every week, helping prevent the premature admission of seniors into aged care facilities.
“With the ageing population living longer in Tasmania, there is a real need for people to remain active in their communities,” Social Activity Group team leader Johnny Mackay said.
“This program is a means to help older people stay engaged and active for as long as they wish.
“We hope to empower participants through an individualised yet flexible program that drives social inclusion for some of our most vulnerable citizens.”
For more information on the programs available and how to get involved, phone 6278 5800 or visit www.each.com.au.
Caption: Members of the Social Activity Group enjoying an outing.