Initiative for seniors popular

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Rest-home co-owner and operator Kate Travers and Invercargill Social Seniors Days Programme participant Paul Snodgrass at the Waikiwi Gardens Rest Home in Invercargill last week.

INVERCARGILL rest-home co-owner and operator Kate Travers says she and husband Denzil have received a good response from the public for their Invercargill Social Seniors Day Programme, as well as referrals from the Alzheimer’s Society and needs assessors at Southland Hospital.

The programme aims to help elderly members of the community combat social isolation by providing them with a place to socialise – the Waikiwi Gardens Rest Home at 25 Ruru St.

Mr and Mrs Travers have opened their rest-home on Tuesdays and Thursdays to anyone over the age of 65.

The programme, launched two weeks ago, sees rest-home staff pick up elderly members of the community and drop them off at the home to stay for the day.

While there, participants enjoy activities and cooked meals, as well as company.

Mr Travers said there was a fee of $35 per person to cover costs.

Mrs Travers said since Invercargill was a small community, people using the programme often found someone they knew or someone they had things in common with.

“One lady reconnected with someone she had known 30 years ago.”

Mr Travers said more men than women had shown interest, but people were from mixed backgrounds.

Paul Snodgrass, who lived alone after his wife of more than 50 years had died, said he enjoyed the programme and would recommend it to others who felt isolated.

“It’s the company, mixing in with the residents, exercising and things you can do inside that you can’t do outside. There are people from all walks of life here.”

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