Clare Valley Model Engineers
Nestled within the Clare Valley is a remarkable organisation dedicated to the art of model engineering, bringing to life an intricate miniature railway network. The club was founded in 1998 and over the next 15 years, volunteers created a miniature railway network, complete with intricately designed tracks, tunnels, bridges, and stations. The layout showcases different eras and styles of railway architecture, providing visitors with a delightful journey through time.
In November last year, we were proud to assist the club with a grant so that they can build picnic tables for visiting families. It helped to make the park more accessible and their next projects involve adding more pathways to also make it easier for visitors.
This is a club that is also very connected to the community and is always keen to work with the local high school to encourage future engineers. During one school term a group of students helped to build the arched shelter which was very successful.
The club attracts members from various walks of life who share a common love for engineering and craftsmanship. They meet twice a week, and the space provides a supportive network for the members However, you don’t need to be an engineer as they are always open to new volunteers who love trains, gardening, and generally just helping out.
The park is open up to the public for special events and on the 2nd and 4th Sunday monthly when people can experience train rides. Visit https://clarevalleymodelengineers.org/ for more information.
More than an exercise class – Easy Moves SYP
Easy Moves is an activity that truly supports the community. Easy Moves SYP offers weekly seniors-specific exercise classes in Yorketown and Stansbury, with classes averaging between 8-20 participants weekly in each location.
Weekly sessions include a range of physical activities, designed to promote strength, balance, coordination, flexibility, and dexterity, as well as increased mental health, social connection and well-being. The class uses chairs as well as hand-held equipment, such as exercise balls, weights, therabands, and pool noodles. Both new and existing clients regularly comment on their improved overall physical and mental health with consistent class attendance. Clients are often referred by local health services to support health issues including diabetes, weight management, neurological conditions, heart health and mobility. Easy Moves is also an inclusive space, which welcomes members with intellectual challenges as well as their carers, and also clients with physical disabilities such as low vision, hearing impairment and mobility issues.
The addition of a healthy quarterly lunch/afternoon tea at each site has been a welcomed and highly regarded part of the program. Participants gather a few times a year after a class to share healthful, whole foods, providing them with the opportunity to connect, socialise, network, and support each other in a meaningful, community-oriented environment. This has proven to be a remarkably beneficial component of the group, providing much-needed resilience and a sense of community in a regional and remote area such as SYP, where geographic and social isolation play a big role and have a large impact on our ageing population.
During a lively lunch last month, several attendees said the same thing: “I came because a friend invited me and haven’t missed one since.”
We are proud to form a partnership with Easy Moves for this year!
Working with Asthma Australia to improve asthma care in Yorkes
Across our rural communities, asthma is a leading health concern. On the Yorke Peninsula, 1 in every 5 or 6 people live with asthma. This rate is higher than the state or national average.
Asthma Australia has recognised that in our communities, the detection and diagnosis of asthma and access to ongoing treatment needs to improve to reduce the risk of asthma attacks and the daily struggle poor breathing is having on people’s lives.
Country Home Services is proud to help Asthma Australia improve asthma care in the Yorke Peninsula with a grant that will supply much needed asthma diagnostic equipment to medical centres. One piece of equipment will ensure compliance with COVID requirements and the others will ensure testing machines will be accurate. With extra funding from Country SA PHN, Asthma Australia has helped train nurses in Minlaton, Maitland and Ardrossan to use the asthma diagnostic equipment, and in Wallaroo by the Better Care in Community team. This new equipment is now critical to comply with COVID infection control regulations.
In addition to improving medical training and equipment, Asthma Australia has identified that an asthma outreach clinic is sorely needed to help traverse the large distances between our towns.
The outreach clinic will be run by trained nurses and equipment will be in the clinic. The nursing team will be supported by Kerry Goldsworthy in the Asthma Australia outreach clinic. Kerry is a local Asthma Community Connector trained by Asthma Australia, providing excellent support through asthma first aid talks to community groups and schools, supporting people with asthma one on one, and sharing resources across the community.
To find out more about the outreach clinic you can contact Kerry by email email@example.com or phone 0498 073 899.
Empowering our clients in the IT world
“We’re expected to do more and more things online, but people forget we didn’t grow up with it. It’s a different language and I don’t speak it.”
These words were spoken by Bruce, but his words are echoed by many of our clients. In consultation with our Country Home Services’ client advisory group, we started monthly IT sessions in our Kadina, Clare, and Nuriootpa offices.
These sessions were tailored to whatever clients said they’d like help with at the time. Some clients came with a limited understanding of the internet/technology, and some had more.
Ron’s first goal was learning to send a text message. He found the informal, social, safe learning space helpful, “My voice is heard, and I feel so much more confident now. I like that I can do things for myself, and I’m confident to try things.”
Kris wanted to have more confidence and skill using her smartphone and tablet. Geoff and Jan, both members of CHS’ client advisory group, are passionate advocates for clients learning.
Geoff enthused, “We need to get up to date, and if I go along to the sessions, at least I can share the things I do, and people might be encouraged that they could do it too.” Jan strongly promotes empowering clients, “We’re old,” she said bluntly, “We’re not stupid. We can be taught how to use technology, not just have people do it for us.”
The IT Sessions were a trial and finish up in May. Country Home Services may continue sessions in some locations; however, there are already some excellent free IT sessions run by community centres and libraries. Our client advisory group is reviewing the IT trial and investigating other ways we can keep supporting clients and communities.
If you have thoughts or suggestions, let us know!
Inclusion and connection through craft
The Avon Art & Craft Guild provides a local social and mental health outlet for the community within the district, and it is these community groups that we are more than happy to support through our CHS Community Grant Program.
The craft club is open each Tuesday 10am to 3pm and whilst open to all ages, the members are aged between 60 and 80 years with some attendees being 90 +.
The quiet rural open space atmosphere provides a safe place for people to attend. It gives people the opportunity to share a conversation, join in activities, or just sit and have a cuppa. Their group enjoys working with wool and they also recycle objects within other types of craft. They often do something special on themed holidays and do a big display at Christmas and invite other community groups to see it.
Whilst the Craft Hall is a community-owned hall, there are no other amenities available in Avon, so they very much appreciated the assistance of our grant program.
The grant has gone towards the purchase of chairs with arms to support those members with Parkinsons, high-rise toilet seats, and grab rails for both ladies and men’s toilets, and also at entry points of both toilets and craft hall.
These small changes alone, make such a big difference to their members, providing a more comfortable and safer space.
We admire the work these small groups do, as in many cases their dedication and thoughtfulness keep their community thriving.
If you are part of a volunteer group in our country communities, then please take a look at our CHS Community Grant Program as we would love to help support you.
Why learning technology is so important for older people.
As technology advances, more and more services and information are moving to an online platform, which makes it essential for older people to learn new ways to interact with this technology. Although it may seem overwhelming at first, many older people soon discover that there are so many benefits for older people in using technology such as:
- Staying socially connected by keeping in touch with family and friends.
- E-health and wellness apps enable older persons to manage their health and maintain independence.
- Using brain activity games to keep their brains active.
- Can provide a learning environment with so many ways to access information about topics they love.
- Ensure their safety from personal alarms to notifications of emergency events such as Bushfires.
- They can listen to the radio and find their favourite music on their devices.
To help with the learning process, organisations such as the SYP Community Hub in Yorketown, provide a range of services to the community including assistance with using digital technology such as phones, computers and tablets.
This includes a weekly computer class for older people that range in age from 50-93 years old, plus drop-in sessions are also available during normal business hours as well.
To support this further, Country Home Services is pleased to support the SYP Community Hub with a grant of $2,500.00 toward upgrading computers used to provide these services at the Hub.
In fact, in order to support other country areas we have also introduced our own sessions called Coffee, Tea and IT Sessions.
Coffee, Tea and IT Monthly Sessions
Knowing the importance of assisting older people with technology, Country Home Services have introduced Coffee, Tea and IT Monthly Sessions. These sessions are held at our offices in Clare, Kadina and Nuriootpa each month.
So you are invited to come along for a cuppa and ask any questions you might have about the internet or if you are needing help with your phone, laptop or tablet, then bring them along.
To find out when these sessions are available or if you have any questions then call Kalie on 0448 557 973 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
*Image above is from the SYP Community Hub Facebook Page.