Stuart Ayres MP, Member for Penrith today joined Toby Chapman of Penrith Regional Galley to announce that seniors across Penrith are set to benefit from new programs through Penrith Performing & Visual Arts (PPVA) and Penrith City Council (PCC) which are designed to keep them socially connected with others.
Stuart Ayres congratulated PPVA on receiving $17,172 and PCC on receiving $40,000 through the Reducing Social Isolation for Seniors Grants Program.
“Helping older people build lasting relationships shows we value their important place in our region as role models, carers and volunteers,” Stuart Ayres said.
“I’m proud our community has stepped up to promote activities and resources, which empower seniors to stay connected.”
PPVA will invite local seniors to meet together for their “Morning Makers” workshops that will be held on the first Saturday of each month at Penrith Regional Gallery. Lead by local digital media artists, the collaborative and engaging workshops will incorporate everyday technologies, building digital literacy and digital art making on iPads. To book call 02 47351100.
PCC, in partnership with LEEP will deliver 10 Digital Literacy Mentoring Workshops for Isolated Seniors through community centres in 5 priority locations. LEEP mentors will work alongside individual seniors to develop strong relationships that will extend beyond the life of the program. Participants will gain skills and confidence in using digital devices to better connect with their local community, family and friends.
Minister for Seniors Mark Coure said 24 local councils and community groups have received a share in $600,000 to run programs designed to reduce social isolation among seniors.
“Even without the challenges of COVID-19 – no one likes to be alone or feel disconnected from their community, especially not our seniors,” Mr Coure said.
“This funding is about helping create environments where people can come together, meet new people and, above all, enjoy themselves in a social environment.
“These programs are helping us achieve exactly that, whether it be helping seniors learn a new skill, connect with like-minded people or even rekindle their passion for a previous hobby,” he said.
Grants of up to $60,000 were on offer for NSW councils or organisations running community-focused, meaningful activities. They must run until December 2022. The projects actively seek out socially isolated NSW residents aged 65 and older, and/or Aboriginal people aged 50 and over, and/or priority target groups.