September 25, 2023

Writing memoirs

If Patrick Stewart can #MakeItSo, we believe you can too. However, writing a memoir isn’t for the feint hearted. It requires bravery, unflinching honesty, and the ability to turn your life lessons into universal truths. And, if you’re writing to document your life for future generations, how do present your life in a fresh, insightful, and authentic way? We believe you can with a few fresh adventures and laughs granted within this 8 week program.   Everyone has a book in them it has been said, however Sir Martin Amis, novelist, noted in his memoir Experience (2000), in fact what everyone seems to have in them “is not a novel but a memoir … We are all writing it or at any rate talking it: the memoir, the apologia, the CV, the cri de coeur.”     Memoirs are generally written to make sense of your life or to narrate a piece of family history. Writing in small sketches, tiny vignettes of a few sentences is so much easier than considering a whole book. When you think of your life, you could also examine it from the point of view of where you were on important days in history or of the accomplishments of which you have been the most proud. And don’t worry, the thought of writing a life retrospective can daunt even the most experienced writer, so it is small wonder that it…

September 24, 2023

Gardens for health

The Adelaide Botanical Gardens says there are over 2,300 plants from 257 species which show the diversity of plants that have helped with healing the body, mind, and soul for thousands of years. Whether you're a home gardener, community gardener, or visitor, a garden can be that wonderful source of exercise, stimulation, and relaxation. With a little planning, garden beds, equipment and tools can be changed to make gardening accessible too. This spring, embark on a gardening adventure with us, as we share valuable tips, tricks, and new skills.   Create new and meaningful social connections by Summer with our small group ‘Get Connected’ programs offering something for everyone - like gardening for your health!   Gardening is widely recognised for its ability to enhance endurance and strength, lower stress levels, and promote relaxation. Simply being in a garden can instil a profound sense of well-being, particularly during the vibrant spring season when nature's beauty is at its peak.  The importance of cultivating vegetable gardens has evolved over time, but what remains constant is the incredible goodness that comes from growing your own produce. Consider, for instance, the diverse health benefits of various vegetables. Peppers have capsaicin, an anti-inflammatory compound that aids in reducing the risk of heart disease. Tomatoes are rich in vitamin C and potassium. Spinach has the potential to bolster your immune system, while broccoli shields your body's cells from harm.  Use our new…

September 21, 2023

Craft through the centuries

Whether you’re a dab hand with a paint brush or you prefer knitting needles, there is always something new to try when we start talking “art and craft”.    If we put our historian hats on and go way back, craft was derived from the meaning “to make skilfully” and landed before the 12th-century to denote a form of work, involving the creation of physical objects, by the use of hands and brain, while art relates to the Latin word “ars” meaning, art, skill, or craft and came from around the  13th-century. Art is the expression of ideas and emotions through a physical medium, like painting, sculpture, film, dance, writing, photography, or theatre and uses elements such as line, shape, colour, value, texture, form, and space – to make meaning out of life and express a personal vision is an innate impulse.  “Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life.”—Pablo Picasso    Arguably though, the oldest recognised technique of all time is pottery. It originated before the Neolithic period (10000 BC); with items such as ceramic vessels discovered in a cave in the Jiangxi province of China.  Crafting includes a variety of forms, from sculpture and metalwork to knitting and printing. These crafts can all be divided into five basic types based on their form and purpose: textile, decorative, paper, functional, and fashion crafts.  These days we may think of craft in…

September 20, 2023

Your Spring into Summer Adventure

Are you ready to make this spring unforgettable? Get ready learn new skills and create meaningful social connections over 8 weeks, with our exclusive Spring adventure! Whether you love art, singing, craft, writing, trivia, gardening or just keen to learn a new skill, our small group Get Connected programs offer something for everyone.  Best of all, it’s not just a series of events – it’s a journey to rediscover the joy in every moment and celebrate the beauty of active ageing. We believe that life gets even more vibrant as we age, and this Spring, we’re bringing you a line-up of unforgettable activities that will make you feel more alive than ever!  All resources are supplied for the activities, so all you need to do is book yourself in..… Workshops are facilitated by experienced ECH staff. Each program is designed to be attended over the 8 weeks: from 16 October to 15 December. Subsidised government funding is available for anyone 65 years and over – ask us how!  For more information or to book, check our Spring to Summer Adventure program page:…

September 18, 2023


ADELAIDE AUTHOR PIP WILLIAMS IN CONVERSATION WITH TV LEGEND JANE DOYLE ECH clients and staff gathered at Dymocks Rundle Mall on Monday 11 September for a special Book Club event hosted by retired Australian television presenter Jane Doyle, featuring acclaimed Adelaide author Pip Williams. Held in conjunction with the State Theatre Company of South Australia, the audience was privileged to hear Williams speak about her compelling novel The Dictionary of Lost Words, which is being adapted to stage by the Company, and will run from 22 September to 14 October. Set during the height of the women's suffrage movement and with the Great War looming, this novel reveals a lost narrative, hidden between the lines of a history written by men. Inspired by actual events, Williams delves into the archives of the Oxford English Dictionary to tell this highly original story. Pip Williams with Jane Doyle Merrin, Pip and Rosina A chat with Jane Pip’s talk The Dictionary of Lost Words Buying the book!…

September 14, 2023

RUOK? Day Message

RUOK? Today is the National Day of Action which reminds us that every day is the day to ask, ‘are you OK?’, and start a meaningful conversation whenever you spot the signs that someone YOU care about might be struggling with life.   On this day, let’s acknowledge the many benefits that exercise brings to supporting your well-being and reducing stress. Let’s consider walking footy as one idea which can help you connect with new people and have those conversations. It’s perfectly okay if you’re not already a budding Matilda’s soccer star or basketball enthusiast. There exists a variety of exercise groups and “social” sports leagues that prioritise social interaction over intense competition. The SANFL & ECH Walking Footy game, is a modified version of Australian Rules Football that prioritises enjoyment, safety, and inclusivity. This could be the perfect activity for you to take part in or simply attend from the sidelines, offering both a chance to play and a chance to socialise! Claire, ECH CE says, “While it remains valuable for our staff to grasp the advantages of the game, comprehending the social benefits of encouraging our clients to engage in a casual ball-kicking session holds equal importance.”   Matt, ECH Head of People and Culture, says, “We want everyone who works at ECH to feel they can talk about life’s ups and downs and access support if they need it.” If you’d like to learn more visit James, ECH’s…

September 7, 2023

One step at a time

For a few years, Helen had lacked confidence in her mobility due to her fibromyalgia – a condition that causes chronic pain and fatigue – and experienced low blood pressure and dizzy spells, leading to unexpected falls. Helen also hadn’t gone shopping, walked the beautiful grounds of the Elliot Gardens Retirement Village where she lives, nor attended the hydrotherapy pool, which she previously loved! But after referral from her Care Coordinator, Joanne in April last year, Helen met Chelsea an ECH Occupational Therapist, who has since given her a new lease on life. Working together, Helen and Chelsea set a number of goals. They started small, and gradually built to regain her confidence in doing the activities she once loved. “My first goal was to walk around the house. Chelsea set me achievable exercises to complete each day, including chair exercises and to practise walking up and down my hallway. She would check on me weekly, and having that contact, really made a difference,” Helen says. “Chelsea is an absolute sweetheart and very empathetic. I feel like she is my granddaughter – she is just so bright and encouraging.”   Helen practiced walking around the village gardens for the first time in 13 years, and she has returned to the hydrotherapy pool. Chelsea says: “We practised walking through Woolworths, which she hadn’t been to for two years. Helen was so happy the first time we went. Seeing her face enjoying life and doing things she once was able to do…

September 5, 2023

Augmented Reality captivates young minds and seasoned souls

In a heart-warming collaboration of young minds and experienced individuals, Year 5/6 Mitcham Primary STEM extension students connected with ECH Community Day Program participants in a bid to bridge generational gaps. The students connected with participants at the Cumberland Park Community Centre to breathe life into Augmented Reality games. Affectionately known as “The Cumby Crew”, the Community Centre is a partnership between ECH and the City of Mitcham, where activities are held weekly to engage older members of the community. At the centre of this transformative journey, a captivating STEM project was born with students creating games with older people in mind, over two terms. The students got to showcase their creations to the individuals who will benefit from their ingenuity in the future. ECH Chief Executive Claire Scapinello said creating these meaningful connections within the local community was essential to overall health and wellbeing. “Each week, the ECH Community Connections Team ensures bonds are built and friendships are formed to encourage participants to try new activities such as craft, macramé, art, sewing, cooking, gardening, or even music and dance,” Ms Scapinello said. “The significance of this STEM primary school project extends beyond the classroom. It underscores the potential of education not only as a means of individual advancement but also as a vehicle for cultivating empathy, understanding, and cooperation.   “The collaboration between young minds and seasoned individuals underscores the invaluable exchange of knowledge and experience that takes place when generations come together with a common goal.” The…

August 7, 2023

Thanks for supporting older Australians

Today, as we mark Aged Care Employee Day, it presents us with a great opportunity to begin a different discussion about what is aged care and what carers do? Given the extensive media coverage of the Aged Care Royal Commission over the past few years, the average person can be forgiven for thinking that aged care and how we live as we get older comes down to one thing: a nursing home, or residential aged care. This means aged care workers who are registered nurses, chefs, lifestyle advisors, and personal carers, just to name a few, all do an incredible job, however, there is a whole other world beyond residential aged care. Aged Care Employee Day presents us with an opportune moment to look at the people who work to support older Australians as they reach different stages of their lives – not age. This means how we change our lifestyle depending on what we need to help us continue living our best lives. Older people can continue to live fulfilling lives with the aid of the caring efforts of wellness workers and care support workers. We need to shift the mindset of getting older to focus on ‘stage’ rather than ‘age’ in an individual’s journey. We know from feedback received by the Royal Commission that most Australians want to stay living in their own homes as they get older. We aim to ‘think outside the square’ and innovate to support our clients at different stages of their lives.