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The Lively Gazette August/September 2023

Welcome to the first spring edition of our Lively Gazette in 2023, issue #25.

"Springtime in Melbourne has been as strange as ever so far - torrential rain one day and beautiful ever-lasting sun the next. On one of the cooler days, I snapped this cute pic of Lively Member Michelle’s kitty, Honey, sitting atop some sewing projects beside some yarn called ‘Serena’ - what a perfect Lively session as the sun peeked through!"

Lively Helper & Gazette Curator, Serena


The Gazette is also going through a change with a bimonthly publication shifting to the norm. We hope you enjoy all that’s encapsulated in this edition, and that the wait builds greater anticipation for the magnificence of the next (October/November). With two months of content, there’s heaps to be said!


Feeling inspired by the stories in the Lively Gazette and wanting to share one of your own with our wider community? Look no further than this form where we encourage you to do so!


Tech Help & delicious feeds at the Church of All Nations Dyson Hall 🧑‍💻🍽️

“Today I helped 4 clients with their tech issues surrounding creating email group contacts on iPad, email rejections from bigpond, printing text messages and audio interface device queries. I also had a lovely meal cooked by the church volunteers.”

Words from Helper, Ann


Planting potatoes & chatting over biscuits 🥔🍪

“Today I helped Roger with planting potatoes in the raised garden beds. I continued to weed for the rest of the session until tea time where we had a catch up over biscuits and coffee (our favourite part!) ”

Words from Helper, Ann


Coffee & croissants in the sun 🥐☕️

“Today Michelle and I spent the day walking along Smith St and Brunswick St. We had an awesome day in the sun - started off at Bon Ap Petite Bistro in Fitzroy with coffees and pastries, then walked through Zetta Florence and looked at all the beautiful things they sell there. A new local artist display space had opened up beside it and we spent some time in there too. On our walk back, there was STILL a massive queue around the block for an Acne Studios sale at the Fitzroy Town Hall which certainly added to the lively atmosphere.”

Words from Helper, Serena

Farewell to Kay 👋

Our incredible Helper and Hiring Team queen, Kay, has left our Lively family to take on the position of Youth Development Officer at Moorabool Shire Council. In this position, she will work to support young people aged 12-25 who are disengaged from employment and/or education. The role sounds incredibly rewarding and important, and not too dissimilar from what we do at Lively! We wish Kay all the best and thank you for all your help and dedication in all the positions and contexts you have worked within at Lively. However, no better words can be said than by Kay’s fellow Hiring Team member, Robin.


“Last month we farewelled our fabulous Hiring Team member and Helper, Kay. We're sad to see her go, but also so excited for this next exciting step in her career! Together with fellow Hiring Team member Lillian, she reviewed hundreds of Helper applications, and hired many of our current STELLAR crop of Helpers. Kay helped us steadily grow our Helper applications, particularly through her advertisements at universities, and brought her keen, astute mind and amazing attention to detail to all aspects of the hiring process. We're incredibly grateful for her efforts and we've had some stern words with her that she has to stay in touch! We know great things lie ahead for her.”

Lively Helper Coordinator & Matching Team, Robin



Frances’ article for the Darebin U3A Newsletter 📬

The following excerpt was written by Lively Member Frances, for the Darebin U3A Newsletter. ‘U3A’ refers to a University centring the ‘Third Age’ of ‘active retirement’, following childhood dependence (First Age) and the subsequent period of employment and family responsibilities (Second Age). Aiming to enhance senior citizens' quality of life, academic courses were first offered in partnership with local universities in 1972 in France. This global concept began in Australia in 1984 and as of 2023, has grown to 250 U3As nationwide with approximately 100,000 members. In Victoria, all classes are taught by volunteers, and various office tasks are also carried out by volunteers.


“Lively is a program that offers a variety of assistance and support to seniors living in the community who are no longer able to do all the jobs they used to do such as cleaning cupboards, sorting books and photographs and gardening. The list is endless as far as Lively are concerned and the program is offered fortnightly through the Darebin Council.


I enjoy having Lively Helpers, they are always willing, keen to learn, understanding and accepting of my plans for the garden. It is great to have a young person come in and listen to me and what I want, as well as offer advice. At the end of most sessions, I am able to sit down and talk with my Helper over a cup of tea. This gives an exchange of ideas and helps us to plan for the next visit.


With my current limited agility to work in the garden, it has been good to know a Helper can come in on a regular basis to help with the chores I can no longer do such as pruning, digging and other strenuous activities.


The best part about having a Helper is getting to know and listen to the younger generation and know that they listen and respect me as we discuss our future plans, both personal and professional. I enjoy listening to my Helpers and hearing about their hobbies, their lives, and sharing my life stories.


I was starting to feel pressured by the garden growing beyond my capabilities, it has been beneficial to have a Lively Helper come in and keep the garden under control. We are able to not only just work on the garden, but drive to the local Bunnings or nursery or even spend time working on the computer. Having a Lively Helper means I no longer feel pressured to do challenging chores on my own.”

Lively Member, Frances


Working as a Lively Helper: Food for the soul (and stomach 😋)

One suprising perk of working as a Lively Helper is constantly being fed delicious food. Whether during an in-home Helper/Member session, a community program, a solo Tech Help session with tea and bickies on the side, completing a Transport outing with a coffee and cake at the local cafe, or together developing our cooking skills in a Personal Projects session, our Members have us covered!

We thought we would share some of the countless cute snaps that Helpers record, displaying their feeds with Members.


Greetings and Farewells to our Community Tech Help Programs 🧑‍🏫

As the months continue to roll over, we are ever grateful to our council partners for funding our Community Tech Help Programs all over the city. With their support, we can pay our tech-savvy Helpers to deliver these free sessions to seniors. Our friendly and welcoming Helpers support participants to feel more comfortable and confident on their mobile devices, helping close the ‘great digital divide’.


We just wrapped a series of nine week programs in several locations across the City of Maribyrnong where we had 100% of surveyed participants say that they would come back for more sessions if offered! Here is what some participants had to say:

  • “Explore ways to keep older people in touch with an ever changing ‘tech’/’web-based’ world. Keeping pace with technology is a challenge as we get older.”

  • “Wish the Lively Helpers good health and to continue to organise more Tech Help programs like this.”

  • “Filling the gaps in my knowledge. I learned new things.”

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In the City of Melbourne, we have ongoing, FREE Tech Connect sessions in South Yarra, Carlton, North Melbourne and Kensington until the end of 2023. We recommend you call the individual venue to book in! See the Tech Connect flyer (below) for more information.














Recap: August Helper Meet-Up @ Our Community House 🤝

“For our August Helper Meet-Ups, we walked through Lively's new process for recording safety concerns that may arise during sessions and discussed some of the top-level safety issues that concern Helpers. As usual, it was a vibrant and stimulating discussion, and a fabulous opportunity to connect and get inspiration from what other Helpers are doing across town.


We also warmed into the meetings by creating some tableaux of famous images - can you guess what we're acting out below?”

Lively Helper Coordinator, Robin



“Helper Meet-Ups are always the perfect opportunity for me to learn something new, and have a little fun while I do. Recently, I haven’t been involved in our Lively group Tech Help sessions, so I loved the chance to catch up with my fellow Helpers and share what’s been happening. It was interesting learning more about the Helpers I do not know as well, and continuing to even bond with the ones I do. Plus I got to meet some new Helpers too which was fun!


I found this particular session especially helpful since it offered a safe and comfortable forum for us to voice our concerns, and offer suggestions, about the current safety paradigms at Lively. We were able to share with each other situations we had experienced which helped contextualise our work and how we interact with Members in a variety of different settings. I look forward to the upcoming October Helper Meet-Up!”

Lively Helper, Serena


Helper Hannah a Hip Hopping! 👏

On Saturday 23 September, Lively HQers Robin and Sophia went along to Gasworks in Albert Park to see our amazing Matching Team/Helper, Hannah perform NINE pieces in a hip hop dance extravaganza for the performative production, 'WHO' (a murder-mystery-themed performance, inspired by the board game Cluedo) by dance company, Legacy.


"Hannah wowed us with her poppin' and lockin', as well as her fitness levels, over the 2 hour show! Additionally, we were delighted that one of Hannah's Lively Members, John, also attended to show his support. We really enjoyed catching up with him on the night and hearing about all his years as a secondary school art teacher."

Lively Community Relations Builder, Sophia



We’re looking forward to more dancing with Hannah at our Helper-led get together, coming up on 12 October at SPAN Community House. We're hoping that she leads us in some more silly dance prompts, as she did at our Stayin-A-Lively disco that was hosted at SPAN in July. The event will be a chill little get-together for the whole Lively community! We'll have chats, nibbles, activities, etc. and encourage attendees to bring along share plates, plant cuttings, produce, etc. if they'd like to!


If you are a Lively Member living in Darebin, please get in touch with us if you'd like to know more about our upcoming Helper/Member afternoon gathering. If this sounds like something you’re interested in, RSVP here to confirm your attendance!

Perks of the 2023 Victorian Seniors Festival 🕺

This October, we encourage all Members and their friends to check out the Victorian Seniors Festival! 👀


This annual Victorian festival boasts a variety of events all across the state, delivered by local councils, community groups and social clubs. For a full list of events, check out the festival’s calendar here! 🗓️


Another bonus was the eight days of free public transport for all Victorian Seniors Card holders from 1 to 8 October 2023! We hope some of our Members got to make use of Victoria's trains 🚋, trams 🚃, and buses 🚌, for free during this time!



August/September Pearl of Wisdom: Seven Wurundjeri seasons 🪻

This Gazette’s Pearl of Wisdom centres on the seven Wurundjeri seasons, as described in Woiwurrung traditions. Over the course of this edition’s content, two seasons have begun: Guling, Orchid Season (Aug) and Poorneet, Tadpole Season (Sept-Oct). The progression and recognition of these seven seasons teaches us to be more mindful of our surroundings as the flora and fauna evolve all around us, in reaction to the annual changes of their environment.

The season wheel itself, featured in this month’s Pearl, comes from Ngarara Place at RMIT University where exploring the six/seven seasons of the Kulin Nation was of paramount importance when appropriately connecting the Ngarara Place to Country.



Are you a Member, Helper or Friend of Lively with a pearl of wisdom (life tip or inspiring quote) or any content ideas for the Lively Gazette that you’d like to share with us? We'd love your contribution! Please email us at stories@lively.org.au if you would like to feature anything in the next edition!

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