June 4 - 10  2023: Issue 586

Winter Sports On Victoria's Mount Buffalo In 1947

From the Film Australia Collection. Made by The National Film Board 1947. Directed by Jack S Allan. At Mount Buffalo Chalet in the Victorian Alps tourists enjoy skiing, ice skating, snowball fights and snowmen

Australia’s Aged Care Sector: Mid-Year Report 2022-23

On 31 May 2023, the UTS Ageing Research Collaborative (UARC) released the third edition of its independent report Australia’s Aged Care Sector Mid-Year Report (2022-23). This third edition of Australia’s Aged Care Sector Report presents new evidence, analysis, and commentary. 

Highlights include:
  • Warning signs of financial distress amongst approved providers
  • Adequacy of direct care funding in residential care depends on workforce availability.
  • Large staffing gaps to meet the minimum standards. 
  • Losses grow for non-care services
  • Home care financial performance continues to decline. 
  • Government spending on aged care far exceeds forecasts.

Fig: 5 Proportion of homes that meet the minimum staffing requirements – source: Australia’s Aged Care Sector: Mid-Year Report 2022-23

The minimum standards will require providers to ensure that:
1. a registered nurse is on-site and on-duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week (from 1 July 2023);
2. residents receive, on average across the sector, at least 200 minutes of total care per day
(from 1 October 2023); and
3. a registered nurse provides at least 40 minutes of that care (from 1 October 2023).

Our analysis indicates that as of December 2022, only 9.8% of surveyed homes have sufficient direct care staffing to meet all three of the incoming requirements (the right column of Figure 5). Although this rate has improved since June 2022 (4.7%),18 it points to the acute workforce challenges providers face in recruiting and retaining direct care staff.

In terms of the first requirement (left column in Figure 5), most (78.9%) of surveyed homes have sufficient staffing to meet the 24/7 registered nurse on-duty requirement. As a further 3.0% of homes will likely qualify for the exemption, 18.1% of surveyed homes will need to increase their registered nurse staffing to meet the 24/7 on-duty requirement.

It is important to note that the 24/7 registered nurse results provide only an approximate measure of the adequacy of homes’ staffing, as it relies on average staffing estimates across the period rather than singular instances when homes do not have a registered nurse on-site and on-duty. Furthermore, as this measure does not account for actual shifts worked, rostering constraints or any overlaps that may occur if two or more registered nurses are on-duty simultaneously, it is impossible to assess whether homes consistently provide around-the-clock care by a registered nurse.

Under the new legislation, homes will be required to report the total number of instances per month in which a registered nurse was not on-duty and on-site for every occasion of 30 minutes or more. Thus, these estimates likely overestimate the proportion of homes that meet the requirements. UARC anticipates that as homes’ reporting of shift-level data matures, it will be possible to provide more precise modelling of homes’ staffing throughout the day. The forthcoming full-year 2022-23 report will add further insight.

In terms of the two ‘care minutes’ requirements (the middle two columns in Figure 5), the December 2022 results show that most surveyed homes are still short of their service-level care minute targets for 2023. Only 38.9% have staffing sufficient to meet their service-level targets for total direct care minutes, and only 21.0% have sufficient staffing to meet their service-level targets for registered nurse minutes. 

The report also includes detailed analyses of de-identified financial, workforce and other operational results, from datasets collected by StewartBrown from 1,138 aged care homes and 60,102 home care packages.


Find out more about the key findings by joining the webinar discussion on 21 June 2021, 3.30 - 4.30 pm (AEST) at https://zoom.uts.edu.au/j/87337076740

I’ve been approved for a home care package but how do I choose a provider – and what if I want to switch?

Danelle Kenny, The University of Queensland and Tracy Comans, The University of Queensland

So you’ve been approved for a home care package. Congratulations! This government-funded program can provide you with much-needed assistance to stay independent and live safely in your own home.

However, the process of getting started can be confusing and overwhelming. Which provider should you choose, how do you get the most out of your package, and what if you change your mind later?

Here’s what you need to know.

What does a provider do?

A provider delivers aged care services subsidised by the Australian government – such as nursing care, personal grooming, home maintenance, meal preparation and transport – under a home care package.

Your provider can help with decision-making, managing your package funding, and handling any fees or charges you may have to pay.

Your choice of provider will be limited to those that service your area, their staffing levels, and possible waiting lists for different service types. My Aged Care’s Find a Provider can provide more information about providers near you.

Are there waiting periods?


There may be a delay between receiving your approval for a home-care package and when one becomes available. This will be the same regardless of your choice of service provider.

Occasionally, the service provider will be at capacity and not able to start the services you want as soon as your package starts.

The only way to know is to ask the service provider directly.

How does the provider work?

Providers all work differently.

Some use case managers and assign staff members to you to provide consistency and familiarity. Others may be organised centrally and different workers might attend each time you need that service.

Some may come the same time each week, or day. Others may come on different days each week.

Think through what’s important to you and what your expectations are before you discuss your care with a service provider.

An older man looks at a computer while his daughter points to the screen.
Choosing a provider can be overwhelming. Shutterstock

What fees does the provider charge?

Provider fees are highly variable. Fee schedules are published on the My Aged Care website or can be requested from the service provider, but it is still sometimes quite hard to compare.

If you can, try to compare:

  • administration fees
  • care management fees
  • service delivery fees (for example, do they charge per hour or per 15 minute block?)
  • travel costs (for example, do they charge per kilometre travelled or a flat rate?)
  • internal or third-party services (for example, do they use their own nurses or outsource it to another company that provides this care?)

Writing these down or creating a spreadsheet can help with comparisons.

What services do I get?

You get to choose how the funds in your home care package are spent, as long as they are broadly for health care.

This choice can be daunting, but try to think through what services best meet your care goals. Consider which services will best meet the long-term goal of staying healthy at home. The assessment completed prior to your approval is a good starting point for identifying gaps in your care.

Ask yourself: “What will help me stay living at home longer?”

Discuss your options with family. Shutterstock

Can I organise services outside of what the provider supplies?

Yes. However, they may not be covered through your home care package.

Say you already have a trusted clinician and would like to continue to receive their care. You can discuss brokering through your service provider.

If you have used up the funds in your home care package, you always have the option to pay privately. This won’t affect your home care package.

Likewise, you are still eligible to receive Medicare rebates, chronic disease management plans, and government-subsidised prescriptions while you’re on a home care package.

Can I review my package as time goes on?

Yes. You should review your package regularly to make sure it still meets your needs.

You might need to change the mix of services, or you might realise you need more funding. If you have a case manager assigned to you, they can help you find the best options.

Think about services you may be able to access outside of your package and what informal care might be available. This can take pressure off your package.

If your care needs are still not being met, you may be eligible to apply for a higher level package, which you can discuss with your provider at any time.

Many providers offer personal grooming among their list of services. Shutterstock

What if I want to change providers?

First, think about what issue you have with the current provider, whether you feel comfortable discussing your concerns with them, and whether switching will resolve the issue.

If you decide to switch, it won’t cost anything. You need to provide between two and four weeks notice for your package to transfer and you will generally need to contact My Aged Care to reactivate your code for the new provider yourself.

Remember there may be waiting periods with the new provider and their fee structure may be different. Be sure to check the details of the new provider carefully to make sure they can support you to stay healthy at home. The Conversation

Danelle Kenny, PhD student, The University of Queensland and Tracy Comans, NHMRC Boosting Dementia Research Leadership Fellow, The University of Queensland

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

‘We lose ourselves’: carers talk about the lonely, stressful work of looking after loved ones

Cliff Booth/Pexels
Fleur Sharafizad, Edith Cowan University; Esme Franken, Edith Cowan University, and Uma Jogulu, Edith Cowan University

An informal personal carer is someone who looks after a family member, neighbour or friend in need of care due to disability, illness or age.

In Australia, there are approximately 2.8 million informal personal carers, including 906,000 who are primary carers. Projections suggest the national demand for carers will rise 23% by 2030.

Around one in ten Australians are informal carers: most of these unpaid. This group of people support one of society’s most foundational needs and our economy would struggle without them.

Yet, little is understood about their experiences. Our recent research reveals how this group of carers lack necessary support for their own wellbeing.

Our research

We interviewed 36 informal personal primary carers living across Western Australia and Queensland. Respondents were aged between 34 and 69 years, and had all been the primary carer for a child, parent, partner, or in-law, for between two and 21 years. Data was collected in two waves: one in 2020 and the other in 2021. Respondents were recruited with the help of an Australian carers’ organisation.

An elderly woman takes an elderly man's blood pressure.
There are almost one million informal carers in Australia who are primary carers. Vlada Karpovic/ Pexels

‘I’d rather it be someone else’s problem’

Many of the carers we spoke to said they were not caring by choice, but by necessity. They said they feel both unseen and undervalued. A husband who had been caring for his wife who suffers from Alzheimer’s said:

I would rather work. I really don’t like being a carer. I’d rather it be someone else’s problem. Being a carer, you just get forgotten.

Carers generally provide care around-the-clock, yet their compensations (such as carer payments) are far from equivalent to full-time pay. The carer payment, for example, equates to only 28% of weekly ordinary time earnings in Australia, and carers can expect to lose approximately $17,700 in superannuation every year they provide care.

Few of Carers Australia’s pre-budget submission items to benefit carers were adopted in the most recent federal budget. Instead, the budget contained items which may indirectly benefit carers through increased support for the cared-for. But these measures do not explicitly recognise and support carers’ wellbeing.

Similarly, the recent draft of the National Strategy for the Care and Support Economy recognises the contribution informal carers make to Australia’s economy but focuses on paid care and support.

Our interviewees spoke about the personal costs of their work, and the stress and loneliness they experience. They shared feelings of being taken for granted as if their role was not work, let alone difficult work. One mum caring for her disabled son shared:

I just want people to see that, [a] carer doesn’t have any leave, paid leave, or recognition. People just think that’s your loved one, that’s your job. But I do want people to understand that I did not choose to be a carer as my career, but I will do it because it is important.

This played into a feeling of people losing their sense of self, because caring work was so demanding and time consuming. A mother who had been caring for her daughter for 17 years after she had been involved in an accident said:

People don’t realise how much we put our life on hold to support the people that need that emotional and mental and physical and spiritual support. We put ourselves in the back shed while we’re supporting them, so we lose ourselves.

A mental toll

Many spoke of how they once had individual goals and ambitions, which they now considered unachievable. All of our interviewees had quit jobs and halted careers to take on personal care full-time. One mother caring for her ill child said:

I think if I had a crystal ball, I don’t know that I would perhaps have become a parent, I think I would have just stuck to my corporate life and had a cat and be done with it.

The mental health toll experienced by carers in our study was clear throughout all interviews. A mother looking after her child with mental health challenges expressed:

Every carer has mental health impacts from being a carer. They won’t say it’s depression or anxiety, but it’s mental health because when the hierarchy of needs is not being met for you, you can’t provide them for somebody else.

As one interviewee explained, the demanding nature of the work had left them exhausted and as though they “can’t do it”. Our interviewees spoke of “falling apart” under the strain of constantly caring for high-needs people in their households. One mother who cared for her children who were both on the autism spectrum recalled:

How many times, if I don’t go to the bathroom and have a shower to cool down myself, I could kill the kids and myself easily. That’s how bad. We are not ever in the category to get help.

Feeling abandoned

Because so much of their work happens in pre-existing relationships and behind closed doors, carers talked about not just feeling unseen but abandoned. A common theme across all interviews was how carers felt abandoned by institutions, health professionals and, in many cases, friends and family members. One husband who had cared for his wife for close to 20 years said:

The government doesn’t even care about the carers […] we’re not really getting anything and then they’re trying to take the crumbs off us.

Carers do not have psychological, institutional or social support for themselves as individuals, separate from their role. But these support pillars are necessary so the entire responsibility of care does not fall solely on informal carers.

Carer-inclusive activities could be a good start. But policy should also be responsive to the unique and unmet needs of carers. These relate to the lack of personal and professional development, feelings of abandonment and social isolation.

With an ageing population, a pandemic, and an emerging crisis over the quality of care for older Australians and people with disabilities, the role of informal carers has become increasingly important.

The truth is that most of us will likely, at some point, undertake care work or be the person being cared for. Better formalised support for carers will ultimately improve the care for the most vulnerable among us and society as a whole.

If this article has raised issues for you, or if you’re concerned about someone you know, call Lifeline on 13 11 14. Carers Australia also offers advice and support.The Conversation

Fleur Sharafizad, Lecturer in Management, Edith Cowan University; Esme Franken, Lecturer in Management, Edith Cowan University, and Uma Jogulu, Senior Lecturer, School of Business and Law, Edith Cowan University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Pittwater RSL: Seniors Show + Lunch 2023

Our Seniors Shows are on every last Monday of month! LIVE in the auditorium. 
Two course luncheon in the Glasshouse PLUS a show special:  $20pp
Doors open from 10am for an 11am show.
BOOK TODAY! -  11.30-12.15pm

26th June 2023: Tony and Joe with special guest - Christoper Booth
31st July 2023: Tony and Joe with special guest - Davidia 
Sept 25th: Jo Elms
Nov 27th: Daniel T

AvPals term 2 at newport 

Register Online for Newport courses
Add your name to the list of others interested in one-to-one training at Avalon for future school terms. Please complete the form at the link below. 

Remember to click the Submit button after completing the form. You will not be enrolled or be required to pay until you hear from our coordinator.

Register in Person for One to One training at Avalon
ONE TO ONE registration mornings at the AvPal training rooms beneath the Maria Regina Catholic Church in Central Road, Avalon.

Dates - Times
  • Friday July 7th, 2023, 9.30am-11am
  • Friday 29th September 2023, 8.30am-11am

u3a at Newport Community Centre: coming up

About Our Courses and Activities
Sydney u3a comprises seven regions covering the greater Sydney metropolitan area. The local one is U3A Northern Beaches Region.

Sydney u3a is managed and run entirely by volunteers who contribute time and energy to provide life-long learning and social activities for everyone.  Join in to enjoy the benefits of membership!  At the one affordable annual membership fee of $85.00 (less than $2 per week), you’ll get:
  • access to a wide range of courses and presentations
  • friendly and inviting social events in your region

Members can attend any course in any of the seven regions
  • Volunteers lead and administer the courses and talks
  • A wide range of topics is covered – from learning foreign languages to table tennis to history to book/movie clubs to philosophy to science related issues. There’s something for everyone!
  • Courses are held in a variety of local venues and via Zoom
  • Events, visits, tours and social activities are also offered
  • Full details of activities are listed each semester in the Course Book and on individual regional pages
From time to time there are changes to course details after publication of the Course Book. Please keep checking your region’s website or the website home page for updates.

u3a Northern Beaches Region
Our current newsletter includes up to date information on courses, events and any changes to the program.  Previous newsletters are available here if you missed any information or wish to refresh your memory.

Please note:  The newsletter is distributed to members by email at the end of each month. If you haven’t received the latest copy please check as it may have been captured in your Junk email folder. If this is the case, please adjust your settings so that you receive future newsletters as soon as possible. We also take this opportunity to issue a friendly reminder to contact us with your updated details if you change your home or email address. Thank you.

Science Astronomy
The James Webb space telescope
23 May
The design, deployment and operation of Hubble’s successor, the JWST, and the science behind its fabulous early images pointing the way to future observations revealing more information than ever before.
Presenter: Kevin Murray

The history of aviation
7 Jun
Trace Pacific Island aviation history from Kingsford Smith’s 1928 historic landing in Suva, through the pioneering era, Qantas’ involvement, and to today’s Pacific national airlines. 
Presenter: Andrew Drysdale

History World
A history of the future
27 Jun
Over many centuries, people have attempted to predict how we will live in the future. Many of these predictions have been stunningly accurate, others very wide of the mark.
Presenter: Laurie Wilson

Games Table Tennis
Every Thursday from 1:15 to 4:15
Main Hall
Table tennis stimulates physical and mental performance. We offer the opportunity to revive a dormant skill and to socialise with new friends in an air-conditioned venue that is ideal for year-round play.
Leader: Richard Hughes 69ingleside@gmail.com
Bookings: Ron Heald and Angela Gollmer ra.u3a.tt@gmail.com

Every Monday from 12:30 to 2:00
Main Hall
Please book only one yoga class per week. Every class consists of basic yoga practice, breathing and
deep relaxation which will help improve joint mobility, increase muscle flexibility and bone density.
Teacher: Maryanne Deans Kolek
Leader: Susan Barnard susanbarnard@iinet.net.au
Bookings: Pamela Frei pamelannfrei@icloud.com

Alternate Wednesdays from 8 Feb 1:30 to 4:00
Activity Rooms 1 and 2
Looking for fun and an enjoyable activity that extends you? Join our drama activities where you will meet new people and have fun along the way. We do drama to music, also mime, improvisation and roleplaying.
Leader: Helen Rosenkranz helenrosenkranz@gmail.com
Bookings: Claire Kennedy eurobin10@hotmail.com

Every Wednesday (except first Wed every month) from 8 Feb 2:00 to 3:30
Main Hall.
Reconnect with nature via this gentle, moving meditation originating in China. Relaxes the joints, aids digestion and sleep, calms the mind and gently tones and strengthens muscles. Work at your own level.
Suitable for most.

Leader: Penny Auburn penauburn@gmail.com
Bookings: Helen Howes helsim@internode.on.net

Avalon Scottish Country Dancing

Avalon Rec. Centre
Thursday 3pm to 5pm
Most Saturdays 2pm to 4pm
(contact Margot Fenelon 0419 122 455 to confirm Saturday class)
COST:  $5 - first visit free
WHAT TO WEAR: Casual clothes and soft soled shoes

Pittwater-Narrabeen Parkinson’s Support Group

The purpose of our group is to support seniors (55yrs +) living with Parkinson’s, their carers, relatives and those who have lost a partner to Parkinson’s, who live on the northern beaches of Sydney.

This support Group has been meeting for around 30 years on the Northern Beaches. Our meetings aim to help reduce the social isolation, and increase community connectedness for our members. Through guest speakers, discussions, and group activities, our meetings will support and promote mental health, healthy lifestyles and well-being.

Our Facebook webpage will be used to store resources and links, and provide another way to safely keep in touch, for those who want to use Facebook. We also have a website that is regularly updated https://wheresdot.wixsite.com/nbpdsupportgroup

We meet regularly and due to Covid we have been meeting at Jamieson Park, The Esplanade, Narrabeen.

Give Dot a call for more information: 0418 640 086 and join our Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1063258404504502

Bilgola Probus Club

The Bilgola Probus Club is now on a membership drive to secure interested people to join our club.  Membership is open to males and females who are currently retired or semi-retired.

We meet on the first Friday of each month at 10am at the Newport Bowling Club; 2 Palm Road Newport.

To find out more, please contact our President, Patricia Ryan on 0438 281 573. 

Concession car parking at NSW Health public hospitals

Patients and carers may be eligible for concession rates on parking at NSW Health public hospitals. 

To be eligible you need to be:
  • requiring treatment over an extended period
  • attending hospital more than twice a week (including carers of long term patients who visit frequently). 
  • ongoing cancer treatment
  • treatment more than twice weekly
  • daily dressing changes
  • cardiac rehabilitation or health promotion classes
Concessions are also available for holders of a: 
  • Transport for NSW Mobility Parking Scheme permit
  • Pensioner Concession Card
  • Department of Veterans' Affairs Gold Card
  • Health Care Card.
Hospitals provide communication to patients, carers and visitors about the availability of concessional car parking rates, this includes:
  • clearly displaying and publicising concessional rates
  • streamlining the concession application process with designated points of access
  • validating concessional parking for the duration of a course of treatment. 
For detailed information on eligibility and concession fees, visit NSW Health webpage:

Learn Something New: Australia MOOCs And Free Online Courses

There is a full range of everything your heart, mind and body wants to learn more about, presented and conducted by Australia's best universities.

 COTA – NSW - cotansw.com.au


The Council on the Ageing NSW (COTA NSW) is the peak organisation for people over 50 in our state. We’re an independent, non-partisan, consumer-based non-government organisation. We work with politicians, policy makers, and service providers as well as media representatives to make sure your views are heard and your needs are met. COTA NSW works to empower and engage people over 50. For decades, we’ve shaped the policies and programs that change lives.

Since our beginning in 1956, COTA NSW has introduced policies and programs that make a real difference to peoples’ lives. We have proud record, having created: ■Meals on Wheels, ■Retirement Village Residents Association, ■Australian Seniors Computer Clubs Association, ■Seniors Clubs, ■Seniors Information Service, ■OM:NI – Older Men: New Ideas, ■Grandfriends, ■Grandparents, Relatives and Kinship Care Alliance, ■Medication Management for Older People, and the ■Mature Employment Line

MWP Care

We've been supporting the community for over 50 years! 
Our Neighbour Aid staff and volunteers are able to provide crucial support to vulnerable elderly residents during the lockdown. 

Help with going to the supermarket or shopping on your behalf from a list as well as transport to medical appointments. Please get in touch via our website for more information 

MWP Care is a not-for-profit organisation that assists frail aged and younger people with disabilities and their carer’s in the Manly, Warringah, Pittwater area to remain independent members of our community.

MWP Care provides support to people who cannot manage alone by providing a range of services. Many of Community Aid’s activities are made possible by the generous work of our wonderful volunteers. Please contact us for more information.

Peninsula Bridge Club - Founded in 1967, we are a key community hub on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. We contribute strongly to our community: with both social connectedness for those who need it and opportunities to learn and train for those with competitive sporting goals. 

The Club is a vibrant organisation hosting up to three bridge sessions a day. We have 37 permanently set tables – that’s 148 players. We host over 30,000 player sessions every year. This includes prominent tournaments and education events attracting players from across the region. 

We pride ourselves on the friendliness of the club and our strong community spirit. We support local charities but even more importantly we support community members by providing them with social connection and mental stimulus – irrespective of age and mobility.

Our clubhouse is at Warriewood.

We have a new Beginners Course starting the end of September.

Each 2-hour lesson focuses on learning by playing, with a break for tea and chocolate biscuits mid-way. The course runs for 6 weeks and costs $100, which includes text book and support materials.

After the lessons we offer “Help with Play” sessions to practise what you’ve learned; Mondays 7-9pm; Tuesdays 2.15-4.30; Fridays 9.15-11.30. ($7 for members & $12 for visitors – membership

We also offer more advanced lessons each month so you can continue to improve your game if you want. 

If you are keen to learn this great game, please call or email Cath Whiddon (Director of Bridge Ed at PBC): 9979 5752 or cwhiddon@live.com.

If you already know how to play, take a look at our website to see what’s on offer this month: peninsulabridgeclub.org.au

Peninsula Bridge Club Facebook page: www.facebook.com/peninsulabridgeclub

Media Releases concerning Seniors this week from National Seniors Australia

With around a quarter of a million members, National Seniors is Australia’s largest consumer organisation for the over 50s and fourth largest group of its kind in the world.

Community Connect

Need help on where to go to find the community information and assistance you need?

At Community Connect Northern Beaches, our professional staff and trained volunteers are knowledgeable, friendly and approachable and we will be only too pleased to help you find the service you want. We provide information and support, as well as advocacy and referral to other non profit community services and government agencies.

If we can’t help you we will get you someone who can. If you are newly arrived or do not have an English speaking background we can offer individual advice and support. Or Why not come to Specialist Community Support Workshops: Family Law, Power of Attorney plus Wills and Executors; Domestic Violence Support and Prevention; Positive Community Integration ; Crime Prevention; Or  Our Free English Classes. 

We also provide information on: Family Services: Child Care, Personal Support & Counselling; Health (Including Mental Health) ;  Material and Practical Assistance ; Advocacy to access state and federal MP assistance; Accommodation and Tenancy (help with form filling); Legal and Financial Matters ; Consumer Affairs ; Multicultural Issues; Conservation and the Environment ; Employment and Education; Accessing Community Facilities  -You are welcome to call in for: Brochures, booklets and fact sheets on a range of topics; Service Directories e.g. Council Guides and Migrant Directories; Publications e.g. The Senior newspaper and Nova.

Access to our community information data base, internet, email, fax and photocopying.(Please note there is a small charge for photocopying and use of the fax to cover the cost of paper, toner and fax call).  We also offer: A Legal Referral Program - Monday 1pm to 2pm at our 30 Fisher Road, Dee Why office.  Taxation Assistance for low income earners and pensioners from July to October. 

What does it cost?: Our services are free, however we are always grateful for a small donation where possible. The program is supported by NSW Department of Family & Community Services (FACS). CONTACT US: Phone: 02 99317777.

 MWP CARE (previously known as MWP Community Aid) is a local not for profit organisation that was founded by Daphne Elsworthy, a Collaroy resident, 52 years ago and we are still going strong! 

In 2022 our programs focus on assisting older people aged 65 years and older, we also assist younger people with a disability and their carers.  We are funded by the Australian Government Dept. of Health through the Commonwealth Home Support Program (known as CHSP). Pittwater Online News PROFILE

These services may be eligible for government subsidies. Call us on (02) 9913 3244 for a confidential discussion. Alternatively you may call My Aged Care on 1800 200 422 to discuss your needs. To access our services (and all other CHSP provider services) you must be registered with My Aged Care – the portal for all things related to Aged Care Services 

We provide services aimed at helping people to stay independently living in their own homes.

Our programs cover:

  • Transport – to medical and social appointments
  • Shopping – Escorted Shopping, Shop By List, Group Social Shopping
  • Visiting – a volunteer visits a client in their own home for social support
  • Individual Activities – visit a friend, the library, the beach, local garden, and nursery, go for a coffee & chat, attend community activities etc.
  • Social Group Bus Outings – our mini bus and experienced staff coordinate a calendar of bus outings to interesting venues
  • CALD (Culturally and Linguistically Diverse) social groups/outings  – Chinese, Italian, Korean , Filipino, Serbian
  • Home Maintenance Modification Service – provided to individual home owners at reasonable cost. Services provided by trusted tradespeople can include Plumbing, Carpentry, Handyman, Electrical, Modifications (ramps, rails etc.)

Visit our website for more at: www.mwpcommunityaid.com.au  and on Facebook: www.facebook.com/mwpcarelimited

2023 Seniors Card Discount Directory

Seniors right across the state can now pick up the latest copy of the NSW Seniors Card Directory from hundreds of locations across the state or access it online.

Minister for Seniors Mark Coure said the directory details more than 2,000 businesses providing significant discounts off products and services available through the NSW Seniors Card program.

“This directory lists all the savings that can be accessed, from supermarkets, retail and boutique stores, health and fitness, travel, utilities and professional services,” Mr Coure said.

“The Seniors Card is the largest program of its kind in Australia, and has been helping keep more money in seniors pockets and easing the cost of living for 30 years.”

The 2023 Seniors Card Directory is available in five regional areas, including Sydney and Surrounds, Central Coast and Hunter, Northern NSW, Southern NSW and Western NSW.

Mr Coure encouraged more businesses to sign up to the NSW Seniors Program and join the more than 6,000 businesses that have opened their door to more than 1.9 million seniors across the state.

“The more businesses that sign up can potentially get more people through their door and seniors have more choice to shop and use services, so it is a win-win,” Mr Coure said.

Seniors Cards are available for permanent NSW residents who are 60 years of age or over and are working no more than 20 hours per week in paid employment.

NSW Seniors Card is pleased to provide members with the 2023 Seniors Card Directory, your guide to the best discounts and special offers from thousands of participating businesses across the state.

Each year five directories are released, one for each region in NSW. The regions are: Sydney & Surrounds, Central Coast & Hunter, Northern NSW, Southern NSW and Western NSW.

To download your copy, please click the link below:
Copies of the 2023 directory are also available for pickup from Australia Post Outlets, Service NSW Centres, MP Offices as well as participating local Councils and Libraries across the state. Please click here to find a location near you.

Also available:
  • Central Coast & Hunter
  • Northern NSW
  • Southern NSW
  • Western NSW

council has a Home Library Service Available for Seniors

For those unable to visit the library because of age or disability, the Home Library Service maintains a vital connection with all that the library offers. Your Home Library Service Officer will help you select items for reading or listening. Volunteers or staff will then deliver and collect your library items on a regular basis.

Register for the Home Library Service
If you or the person you care for is unable to visit the library or carry library items home due to age, frailty or disability, please complete Council's Home Library Service Application Form or call us on 9942 2393. 

A medical certificate or statement signed by a doctor may be required to assess eligibility.

What happens next?
After staff receive your completed application form, a Home Library Service Officer will contact you to arrange a time to meet and discuss the service details with you.

Staff or volunteers will then select your items according to your borrowing preferences and then deliver them to you. During this visit you can return any items that you have finished with.

Aged Care Complaints Commissioner 

Any person can make a complaint to the Commissioner, including care recipients, family members, friends, staff, volunteers, or professionals.

Complaints may relate to any aspect of services including care, choice of activities, discrimination, catering, communication or the physical environment. The 1800 550 552 helpline is staffed 9am to 5pm (AEDST) Monday to Friday.

Out of hours callers can leave a message, or contact the Commissioner at anytime through the Aged Care Complaints Commissioner website.


In 2014-15, there were 10,924 contacts to the Aged Care Complaints Scheme. 3,725 were assessed as a complaint, 3,812 ‘other’ contacts includes non-compulsory notifications, own motion investigations and compliance referrals. There were also 3,387 out of scope contacts which were not related to an approved provider or an approved provider’s responsibilities under the Aged Care Act.

Country Pensioner Excursion ticket: NSW Public Transport

Parents missing out on REAL face time? If they have a Pension Card, sign them up & they could get unlimited $2.50 Country Pensioner Excursion tickets*.
Call 13 22 32 to sign up.

Country Pensioner Excursion ticket (CPE)
A Country Pensioner Excursion (CPE) ticket is an affordable ticket for eligible pensioners and seniors to travel by train in regional NSW and the ACT.

For $2.50 you can book an economy class seat on a NSW TrainLink 

Regional train service. You will need to book 7 days or less in advance


Avalon Computer Pals (AVPALS) helps Seniors learn and improve their computer skills. It is a not for profit organisation run by volunteers. 

Started in 2000 it now has 20+ trainers and many hundreds of students. At a really low cost (about $50 a school term) they can provide one-to-one training on most matters connected with computing and related technologies like mobile phones and digital cameras. From the smallest problem (how to hold the mouse!) to much more serious matters, there is a trainer who can help.

We offer “one to one” personal tuition or special short courses in the training rooms under the Catholic Church in Avalon. Training is conducted Monday to Friday from 9am to 4pm. For more information visit AVPALS web site www.avpals.com or phone 02 8064 3574

Keep up to date on our Facebook page

Find out more at: www.avpals.com

Disclaimer: These articles are not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of Pittwater Online News or its staff.

Study Highlights Vital Need For Specialised Aged Care For Older People Experiencing Homelessness

May 29 2023
A new study has highlighted the growing need for dedicated services to support older people subject to homelessness.

Homelessness among older people is a growing issue in Australia, with many facing numerous challenges such as poor health, depression and limited access to healthcare services. In Australia, it is estimated that over 116,000 people are homeless of whom 16% are aged 55 and over.

Dr. Claire O'Connor, a member of the UNSW Ageing Futures Institute, has conducted a small-scale study that sheds light on the importance of specialised aged care for this vulnerable population.

The study which enrolled 35 residents in a purpose-built aged care home, found alarming statistics at the time of admission. Almost half the residents had scores suggestive of dementia, the majority were frail and at a high risk of falls, and many exhibited signs of depression.

However despite these initial findings, the research showed positive outcomes for residents enrolled in the aged care home. Over the first 12 months of living in the home, significant improvements were observed in the residents' personal well-being scores, with clinically significant enhancements in overall health-related quality of life. Certain aspects such as physical functional independence, frailty, and global cognition remained stable, while cognitive functional ability showed a decline over time. In addition, a smaller cohort of residents with complete data were also found to have an average saving to government of approximately $32,000 per resident over the 12-month period, compared to 12 months prior to admission.

"Whilst this was a small study, the positive outcomes contribute to the growing body of evidence highlighting the importance of specialised aged care for older adults subject to homelessness," said Dr. Claire O'Connor.

“These findings provide valuable insights that can inform policymakers and healthcare providers in addressing the unique needs of older adults subject to homelessness, promoting the development and expansion of dedicated services to support this vulnerable population.”

Read the full Article: 
O’Connor, C.M.C., Poulos, R.G., Sharma, A. et al. An Australian aged care home for people subject to homelessness: health, wellbeing and cost–benefit. BMC Geriatr 23, 253 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12877-023-03920-3

Navigating Community-Based Aged Care Services From The Consumer Perspective

May 29, 2023
UNSW Aging Futures Institute members, including UNSW PhD student Ms Yuchen Xie and her supervisors, Myra Hamilton, Carmelle Peisah, Kaarin J Anstey, and Craig Sinclair, have conducted an international scoping review to investigate how older adults navigate complex aged care systems across different countries.  

The shift to consumer-directed aged care means that older people need to play a more active role in navigating the system for adequate health and social services. However, navigating the system can be challenging and result in unmet needs and difficulty accessing available resources.

Institute members have carried out a recent scoping review that investigates how the aged care navigation concept is discussed in current literature and examines research on the experiences of older people navigating community-based aged care services with or without support from family carers. 

The review paper published in The Gerontologist is part of Ms Xie’s PhD project, "Navigating aged care services for older Australians and their families," funded by the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship. The project aims to understand the experiences and challenges of navigating aged care systems from an interdisciplinary perspective, bringing together researchers from Psychology, Geriatrics, Public Health, and Social Policy.  

"Country-specific and culturally appropriate research are needed to address structural-level factors, such as complicated and fragmented aged care systems, that influence the navigation experience of older adults. This is particularly important for distinct groups such as people from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) or Indigenous backgrounds, and those living with dementia or cognitive impairment,” says Ms Xie. 

“We hope our findings will inform the development of future interventions and policies that address the challenges faced by older adults and their families in accessing Community-Based Aged Care Services."

Read the research publication here

I’m over 65 and worried about the flu. Which vaccine should I have?

Philippe Leone/Unsplash
Magdalena Plebanski, RMIT University; Jennifer Boer, RMIT University; Katie Louise Flanagan, University of Tasmania, and Kirsty Wilson, RMIT University

Influenza, or the flu, is a virus transmitted by respiratory droplets from coughing and sneezing. It can cause the sudden onset of a fever, cough, runny nose, sore throat, headache, muscle and joint pain.

In Australia, the flu is responsible for more than 5,000 hospitalisation and 100 deaths a year. The highest rates are among those over 65, whose immune systems aren’t as effective as they used to be, and children under five, whose immune systems are yet to mature.

To combat the decline in immunity as we age, specific vaccines are available for people aged 65 and over. So how do they work, and why exactly are they needed?

Remind me, how does the immune system work?

The immune system uses multiple mechanisms to fight viral infections, which can be divided into two major arms of the immune system, called innate and adaptive immunity.

Innate immunity involves multiple inflammatory cells and chemicals that are triggered immediately, or within hours of encountering an infection. They activate the immune system to clear the infection.

Adaptive immunity takes a little longer (weeks) to work and involves memory T cells and antibody-producing B cells, which can be reactivated when the body encounters a virus or other pathogen.

The combined innate and adaptive immune response determines how well we respond to an invading virus like influenza.

Why are older people more at risk from the flu?

Generally, as we age past 65, the innate cells become less effective at their job of clearing infections. They also start producing more inflammation.

New T and B cell numbers also decrease with increasing age and hence the adaptive immune response is also not as effective as when we are younger. This immune system decline is called immunosenescence, which leads to increased susceptibility, hospitalisation and death from influenza.

Older woman wearing a beanie sorts papers in her living room
As we age, our immune system can’t clear infections as effectively. Mariia Chalaya/Unsplash

Certain medical conditions, such as cancer and heart and lung conditions, increase susceptibility to severe influenza, with older people being more likely to have additional medical conditions than younger people.

What flu vaccines are available?

Annual flu vaccines are recommended to protect against the common circulating strains of influenza, which can differ from year to year.

The standard flu vaccines offered to adults aged under 65 consist of surface proteins of the virus or inactivated (killed) virus from four influenza strains: two A strains (H1N1 and H3N2) and two B strains.

When you’re vaccinated, your immune system makes antibodies from B cells which protect you if you become exposed to these strains of the virus.

However, the standard influenza vaccine is less effective in older people.

Older people look out over an ocean
The standard flu vaccines aren’t as effective for older people. Katarzyna Grabowska

Two stronger or augmented vaccines have been made targeting this age group. They contain the same components as the standard vaccine, but one vaccine – called Fluad – uses a strong adjuvant (an agent used to increase the immune response to vaccination) called MF59 to stimulate better immunity.

The other augmented vaccine, called Fluzone, uses a four-fold higher dose of each influenza strain to increase immunity.

How do they compare?

Studies comparing Fluad and Fluzone show both vaccines stimulate stronger immunity against influenza than the standard flu vaccine and are therefore likely to provide better protection.

Studies directly testing for improved clinical outcomes with vaccines for over-65s show a small benefit of receiving either of the vaccines over the standard vaccine, including a modest decrease in lab-confirmed influenza, hospitalisations and emergency department visits compared to the standard influenza vaccine.

They are however yet to show and impact on flu-related deaths.

Woman pushes mother in a wheelchair
Fluad and Fluzone provide better protection for older people against the flu than the regular vaccine. Raychan/Unsplash

In the few studies comparing Fluad and Fluzone directly, there is little evidence of a difference between them in reducing influenza and serious flu outcomes. The Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation therefore recommends using either Fluad or Fluzone.

While both have been Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) approved since 2020, only Fluad is available for free on the National Immunisation Program for people aged 65 and over.

Fluzone is only available with a private prescription if you’re 60 years and over, at a cost of around A$65-70.

If neither augmented vaccine is available, a standard influenza vaccine is also acceptable for older people, since any influenza vaccine is preferable to receiving none.

Flu vaccines can also be given at the same time as COVID vaccines.

How else can we protect against the flu?

While influenza vaccination is the single most effective way of preventing influenza, other measures such as social distancing and wearing a mask or N95 respirator can also provide some community protection.

Wearing a mask or N95 respirator significantly reduces the risk of infecting others when infected.

The evidence for protecting oneself against infection is less conclusive, mainly because it’s linked to early, consistent and, importantly, the correct use of masks.The Conversation

Magdalena Plebanski, Professor of Immunology, RMIT University; Jennifer Boer, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, RMIT University; Katie Louise Flanagan, Infectious Diseases Specialist and Clinical Professor, University of Tasmania, and Kirsty Wilson, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, RMIT University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Over half of eligible aged care residents are yet to receive their COVID booster. And winter is coming

Hassan Vally, Deakin University

As Australia heads towards the fourth winter of the pandemic, we have once again started seeing an increase in the level of COVID circulating. With this comes an increased risk of infection and serious illness.

Elderly people living in aged care are one of the groups facing the greatest risk.

But the latest figures from the federal health department show that to May 24 just over 40% (42.9%) of aged care residents estimated eligible for a booster vaccination have had their latest shot and are fully vaccinated.

If we also take into account immunity gained through recent infection in the past six months, just over half (50.4%) of aged care residents are estimated to have adequate levels of immunity.

Although numbers have increased considerably in the past few weeks, this is plainly far from ideal.

It’s been heartbreaking

Earlier in the pandemic, I was briefly part of the Victorian Aged Care Response Centre, set up to coordinate the response to the COVID surge in residential facilities. I was part of the team that collected, collated and interpreted COVID data used to inform the public health response.

What we witnessed in aged care then, and since, has been nothing short of heartbreaking.

Our inability to adequately protect aged care residents in the early part of the pandemic was undoubtedly one of our biggest pandemic failures.

I saw firsthand that this was not due to a lack of effort. The reality was there were just too many factors thwarting our ability to bring outbreaks under control in this uniquely challenging setting.

Since then, aged care residents have continued to die from COVID during the Omicron era. Since January 2022 COVID has accounted for about 5% of all deaths in residential aged care.

Why booster shots are so critical

Maintaining high levels of immunity by being up to date with COVID boosters is vital for protecting this vulnerable cohort from serious outcomes this winter.

Age, existing chronic illnesses and weaker immune systems are just some of the reasons why this group is most vulnerable.

Not only do vaccines protect against severe illness, they reduce the likelihood of passing COVID on to others in this high-risk environment.

And with higher rates of COVID transmission in the community, we’ll likely see more active outbreaks in residential aged care facilities. This highlights how important it is to see more residents receive their booster shots.

Health worker vaccinating an elderly woman wearing mask
Age, existing chronic illnesses and weaker immune systems are just some of the reasons why elderly people need to have their COVID booster shots. Shutterstock

COVID fatigue, vaccine distribution

It’s not entirely clear why COVID booster rates in aged care are so low.

There may be some COVID vaccine fatigue. Residents and their families may have tuned out to public health messages about the importance of vaccination and keeping up to date with booster shots. But how much of an issue this is in aged care is hard to measure.

Changes in the way COVID vaccines are delivered to aged care may have also played a role. Early in the pandemic, vaccine delivery was coordinated federally. However, now aged care centres are responsible for ensuring residents have access to the recommended COVID vaccine, with primary health-care providers, such as GPs and pharmacists, administering the shots.

We’ve tried incentives

Health departments and health workers are well aware of the need to adequately protect aged care residents as we head towards winter.

In February 2023, incentive payments for eligible health workers to go into residential aged care facilities to administer COVID vaccines were streamlined and increased.

In April 2023, the federal health department’s chief medical officer, and the aged care quality and safety commissioner issued a joint letter to aged care providers with advice on preparing for winter, including a reminder about COVID vaccination.

The federal government has also called on Primary Health Networks – bodies responsible for coordinating delivery of primary health care in their regions – to encourage them to support residential aged care homes across Australia to arrange COVID vaccination clinics.

This is all positive and sensible. Yet, we still haven’t seen a huge spike in COVID booster rates as we reach the end of May. That is concerning.

We mustn’t forget flu vaccines

As we enter the colder months, influenza also poses a significant threat for aged care residents.

So promoting COVID and influenza vaccination in aged care should go hand-in-hand this year, and for the foreseeable future.The Conversation

Hassan Vally, Associate Professor, Epidemiology, Deakin University

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Active and Healthy at any age

Staying physically active is the single most important thing you can do to stay fit and independent, as you get older. Age is no barrier, research shows that exercise, at any age, is worth the effort. If you are in any doubt about exercise, please talk to your doctor.

This website (https://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/) can help you find an exercise program in your local area and provides information and tools that can assist you to increase your physical activity.

Join Healthy and Active for Life Online!

Healthy and Active for Life Online is a FREE 10-week healthy lifestyle program for adults aged 60 years* and over.

The program will help you learn how to make small, sustainable changes in your lifestyle to improve your health.

The program covers lots of topics including healthy eating and physical activity.
No prior knowledge or exercise experience is required!
*Aboriginal people aged 45+ years can register. 

Healthy and Active for Life Online will help you to be active by:
  • Providing online exercise programs for you to complete in the comfort of your home
  • Providing you with an exercise manual and log to keep you on track
  • Helping you to create realistic goals and increase your fitness

Apply for the $200 Seniors Energy Rebate

A new rebate for independent retirees who hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card to help with electricity costs. The Seniors Energy Rebate is available for eligible independent retirees to help cover the cost of their electricity.

To be eligible you need to hold a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card (CSHC).
CSHCs are means-tested concession cards issued by Services Australia and the Department of Veterans' Affairs (DVA). 

The Seniors Energy Rebate is $200 per household, per financial year.
If your application is successful, the rebate will be paid directly into your nominated bank or Credit Union account.

Note: Gas accounts are not eligible for the rebate.

What you need
  • your valid CSHC from Centrelink or the DVA
  • the most recent electricity bill for your current primary place of residence
  • your contact details
  • your bank or Credit Union account details
How to apply
  • Check you meet the eligibility requirements.
  • Select the 'Apply online' button.
  • Enter the required details.
  • Submit the application.
If you're unable to apply online, visit a service centre or call us on 13 77 88.
If your application is successful, you'll receive payment within 5 working days into your nominated bank/Credit Union account. Service NSW will contact you if there are problems issuing your payment. 

assistance to pay your aged care costs

It’s now easier to get help if you need assistance to pay your aged care costs.
Services Australia have improved their Aged Care Claim for financial hardship assistance form and made changes to some evidence requirements. They’ve made these changes so it’s easier for you to get help.

You may get help if you can’t pay your aged care costs and you’re either:
  • in residential or respite care
  • getting a home care package.
You can claim for financial hardship assistance if all of the following apply:
If you get a Home Care Package, your care must have started on or after 1 July 2014.

Before you claim, you should update your income and asset details as well as your partners if you have one. You may also be eligible for other payments and services.

Next steps

Profile: Avalon Soccer Club
Avalon Soccer Club is an amateur club situated at the northern end of Sydney’s Northern Beaches. As a club we pride ourselves on our friendly, family club environment. The club is comprised of over a thousand players aged from 5 to 70 who enjoy playing the beautiful game at a variety of levels and is entirely run by a group of dedicated volunteers. 

NSW Seniors Card program: Translated Resources

If you're from a culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) background, and would like more information about the NSW Seniors Card program, translated versions of the Membership Guide brochure are available here:
Available for download in 13 different languages.

Pensioner water rebate

If you receive a pension, you may qualify for a rebate on your water bill. 

To be eligible, you’ll need a:
  • Pensioner Concession Card from Centrelink or Department of Veterans' Affairs, or
  • gold Health Card (also known as a gold card) that shows:
  • war widow
  • war widower
  • extreme disablement adjustment (EDA)
  • totally and temporarily incapacitated (TTI)
  • totally and permanently incapacitated (TPI).
You’ll also need to be the owner and occupier of one of the following:
  • single dwelling
  • dual occupancy
  • strata or company title unit
  • unit in a retirement village with a life term lease.
If you own the property with someone who isn't a pensioner, you may still get a rebate. This depends on your relationship with the other owner(s) and your eligibility.

Rebates are applied to each bill. 

You can claim your pensioner rebate by selecting your water supplier from the following list:


Contact Community Care Northern Beaches HERE

Profile Bayview Yacht Racing Association (BYRA)
1842 Pittwater Rd, Bayview
Website: www.byra.org.au

BYRA has a passion for sharing the great waters of Pittwater and a love of sailing with everyone aged 8 to 80 or over!

 Keep your Wits About You

A regular contributor suggests we all look at Lumosity to see if will suit keeping active mentally. Their website states: "improve Brain Health and performance. Designed by neuroscientists, Lumosity exercises improve core cognitive functions. Researchers have measured significant improvements in working memory and attention after Lumosity training. Dozens of research collaborations help improve the Lumosity training program and its effectiveness." You can visit their website to decide for yourself  at: www.lumosity.com/app/v4/personalization

Heartmoves is a low-moderate intensity exercise program. Regular participation in Heartmoves will help to: Better manage weight, blood sugars, blood pressure and cholesterol; Improve fitness, balance, co-ordination and flexibility; Enhance your quality of life and meet other people. Ingrid Davey is a qualified Older Adult Instructor and accredited Heartmoves Leader who will guide you through an exercise program that is fun, safe and modified to suit you. Tuesday 9.30am and Thursday 10.30am at Nelson Heather Centre, 4 Jackson Road Warriewood.  The cost per class is $10.00 casual now and $17.00 for two classes. Phone Ingrid to secure your spot on 0405 457 063. www.heartfoundation.org.au


EasyLink (formerly Easy Transport Manly Warringah Pittwater) - medical appointments, shopping trips, mystery tours and Saturday Lunch - this great non-profit organisation offers great ideas and solutions.

Visit: https://easylink.com.au

Australian Government Dept. of Health: Hearing Devices for Seniors

Australian Government's Hearing Services Program (the program), offers the option of being fitted with a hearing device if a hearing assessment identifies you have a hearing loss and a hearing device may assist you. 

You will be given a recommendation for a fully subsidised hearing device, and may also be offered the option of purchasing a partially subsidised hearing device. These devices have been approved by the Office of Hearing Services.

You can find out more about this program on the Australian Government's Department of Health webpage on the program here

NSW Seniors Website: Crosswords, Puzzles & Games

Did you know that the NSW Seniors website has a range of games and puzzles for you to exercise that great grey matter upstairs?

Recently new items have been added in and now the list is:

Just click on the links we've embedded next time it's too cold out for a stroll and exercise that other great asset you have - your mind!

Meals on Wheels 

Meal preparation and delivery: Benevolent Society
Our food services include meal preparation, and delivery of hot, frozen or chilled meals as part of the Meals on Wheels NSW program. This service is currently provided in the Northern Beaches area of Sydney.

Assistance to prepare food at home is available as an activity to help stay active and independent.
To find out if you or someone you know is eligible for this service, call our friendly staff. 
Call 1800 236 762

Pittwater; 6 Jackson Road, WARRIEWOOD, NSW 2102
Phone: 02 9457 3900

Manly & Warringah; Manly Seniors Centre, 275 Pittwater Road, MANLY, NSW 2095
Phone: 02 9976 1469

The Senior Newspaper Online 


On facebook

My Aged Care

If you need some help around the house or think it’s time to look into aged care homes, My Aged Care is here to help.
My Aged Care is the Australian Government's starting point on your aged care journey. Find and access the government-funded services you need.

Learn about different types of care
If you are just starting out on your aged care journey, this is your first step. You can see what services are available to help you stay in your own home, or what to expect in an aged care home.

Get assessed
If you’ve had a look at what services might be available and you want to know if you are eligible, this is your next step. Read about how to apply and what’s involved in the assessment process.

Find a provider
If you’ve been assessed and are ready to find a provider and set up your new services, start here. Find out what to consider and get information about service providers near you.

Manage your services
If you are receiving services and want to check what you’ve got in place or make some changes, head to this section.

Need some help?
If you need some help, the My Aged Care team can answer most of your questions over the phone. Call 1800 200 422

Computer Pals for Seniors: Northern BeachesTechnology made easy for Seniors

Have you ever struggled with the demands of modern technology? Come and join our friendly club and learn at your own pace. 

Computer Pals for Seniors Northern Beaches is here to help you master your device, be it Android/Apple tablets and phones, Apple/Microsoft/Chromebook laptops.

Each lesson is one-on-one for an hour each week during term times.

We are based at The Tramshed Arts & Community Centre, 1395a Pittwater Road, Narrabeen, close to the B-Line bus stop.

If you would like further information please contact Anne - Tel: 9984 0604 or email anne.computerpals@gmail.com

Home Instead Sydney North Shore & Northern Beaches

We are a provider of quality home care and companionship services for seniors in the Northern suburbs of Sydney. 

To you, it’s about finding trustworthy care for your ageing loved one. To us, it’s about providing the highest-quality in-home care services to fit you and your family’s needs.
To Us, It's Personal.

We provide services to all areas and suburbs in the North Shore and Northern Beaches of Sydney.
Telephone: (02) 9144 2322

Seniors Toy Repair Group needs your help

Volunteers are sought to help out on Wednesday mornings (7.30am to midday) at the group's workshed in Ingleside. Volunteers need their own transport and be willing to sort and clean toys that are picked up at different collection points on the Northern Beaches. 

Prospective volunteers can email Mary Kitchen to arrange a visit to the workshed. To arrange a donation pickup please call Terry Cook on 0410 597 327 or email himFind out more about this great community group HERE

Know Your Bones

CEO of Osteoporosis Australia, Greg Lyubomirsky says “bone health is an important part of your general health and anyone with risks for osteoporosis should be investigated.”

He has urged people to try the online self-assessment, Know Your Bones developed by Osteoporosis Australia and the Garvan Institute of Medical Research. 

"Simply visit the website, complete the assessment in your own time and a personal report is generated which will outline potential risks and can be taken to your doctor if required.”

You can take the assessment here:  www.knowyourbones.org.au

Wellbeing Plus 

The Wellbeing Plus Course is a free, online treatment course for Australian’s aged 60 years+  
The course includes 5 lessons delivered over 8 weeks, with optional weekly support from a therapist via email or phone. It aims to help us understand symptoms of anxiety and depression, and practice helpful skills.    

Over 95% of people said they would recommend the Wellbeing Plus Course.  

If you're interested in learning more, visit www.mindspot.org.au/course/wellbeing-plus  


Northern Beaches Concert Band is looking for flute, clarinet, saxophone, tuba and trombone adult players.  We cater for players from beginner to advanced and have a varied and exciting repertoire.  Come and join us during school term time at 7.30pm, Pittwater High School, Mona Street, Mona Vale. 
Details 9970 7131 or 0414 560 263.

Pensioner's Concessions: Council Rates

Did you know that Pensioners are entitled to concessions on their Council Rates?

Concessions are available for eligible pensioners. To be an eligible pensioner you must receive a pension from either Centrelink or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, and be entitled to a pensioner concession card issued by the Commonwealth Government. You can only claim a concession on the property if it is the sole or principal place you live.

If you are eligible, you are entitled to:
  • Half of the total of your ordinary rates and domestic waste management service charge, up to a maximum of $250.
  • Half of your water rates or charges, up to a maximum of $87.50.
  • Half of your sewerage rates or charges, up to a maximum of $87.50.
To apply, you need to complete a pensioner concession application form. You can obtain these forms from your council - download our area's one HERE

Tech Savvy Seniors

Tech Savvy Seniors provides free or low cost digital skills training on how to use computers, tablets and smartphones to keep in touch with family and friends, access essential services, conducting personal business and discover more about the things you are interested in.

Join the thousands of people over 60 who have already completed this fun, practical training and made new friends in the process.

With over 150 training locations across NSW as well as resources online it has never been easier to build your digital skills and confidence, with training available in a range of languages. To find out more about training sessions available near you, visit the Tech Savvy Seniors website to find your local library or community college provider.

For here: 
  • Northern Beaches Council Library at Glen Street, Mona Vale, Warringah Mall 02 9976 1720 
  • Northern Beaches Community College Inc at Narrabeen, Brookvale, Mosman (02) 9970 1000 enquiries@nbcc.nsw.edu.au
The Tech Savvy Seniors website also contains a great range of ‘self-teach’ videos and free digital literacy training resources available to make it easy to learn at your own pace to develop your digital skills from the comfort of your home.

Tech Savvy Seniors is a NSW Government initiative in partnership with Telstra.

NSW Spectacles Program

The NSW Spectacles Program provides glasses and visual aids to eligible recipients who might be at risk of a preventable decline in their eye health.

If you're eligible, you can receive free of charge in any 2-year period:
  • one pair of single vision glasses, or
  • one pair of bifocal glasses.
Contact lenses, tinted lenses or low vision aids may be provided in certain circumstances.

You are eligible if you:
  • receive a full Centrelink pension/benefit
  • have no other income other than the Centrelink payments
  • have financial assets less than $500 (if single) or $1000 (if married/partnered or parent/guardian)
  • are a low-wage earner who earns less than:
  • the JobSeeker Payment if you're under 65, or
  • the aged pension if you're over 65.
People living in regional/remote areas and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples may also qualify for the subsidy. At your appointment, your provider will use the program’s online portal to check your eligibility using the information you've supplied.

Visit Vision Australia for more details on the program, your eligibility and how to apply, at:

RSPCA's Community Aged Care Program

RSPCA NSW understands that to an elderly owner, a pet can mean everything. Our Aged Care program aims to keep pets and their elderly owners happy, healthy and together in their own homes for as long as possible. To do this, we assist elderly pet owners over the age of 65, Indigenous pet owners over the age of 50 and palliative care patients of any age.
  • services our Aged Care program offers include: temporary foster accommodation and/or emergency pet boarding if the owner requires medical treatment, respite or other assistance
  • assistance with veterinary treatment
  • home visits to assist the elderly with basic pet care
  • assistance with pet grooming
  • assistance with transport to and from the local veterinarian
  • a volunteer network to assist with dog walking and short periods of in-home care if the owner requires medical treatment, respite or other assistance
Please note that due to high demand for this program, we ask that pet owners first ask family and friends whether they are able to assist with their pet’s care.

This community program was previously known as Pets of Older Persons (POOPs).

For more information please contact the RSPCA Community Programs helpline (02) 9782 4408.

The helpline operates Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. During weekends and public holidays contact the RSPCA Contact Centre on (02) 9770 7555
Aged Care Program FAQs

 Australian Ageing Agenda

Australian Ageing Agenda (AAA) is an independent and authoritative bi-monthly publication for people who work in or around the aged care and retirement sectors in Australia. It provides a broad range of news, education and opinion with an emphasis on knowledge sharing and research translation.

Each issue also contains regular updates on relevant business and financial issues along with a selection of well researched features on crucial systems and operations, clinical care, technology, built environment and other issues relevant to the ‘ageing sector’. AAA leads the way with the industry’s most comprehensive conference details and remains Australia’s number one source of news and information about ageing issues and aged care.

Have a look at their comprehensive website HERE

Older Persons Advocacy Network (OPAN)

Older Persons Advocacy Network offer free, independent and confidential services that focus on supporting older people and their representatives to raise and address issues relating to accessing and interacting with Commonwealth funded aged care services.

Older Persons Advocacy Network  seek to ensure that aged care consumers understand and exercise their rights and participate, to the maximum degree possible, in the decisions affecting their care.

Older Persons Advocacy Network achieve this through the delivery of individual advocacy support, information and consumer and service provider education.

Nine State and Territory based organisations form the OPAN network. Older Persons Advocacy Network is funded by the Australian Government to deliver the National Aged Care Advocacy Program (NACAP), providing a national voice for aged care advocacy.

Older Persons Advocacy Network organisations offer free aged care advocacy services that are independent and confidential

Older Persons Advocacy Network organisations provide free information about aged care service provision, referrals and the rights and responsibilities of consumers

Older Persons Advocacy Network organisations offer free information and education sessions to consumers and providers of Commonwealth funded aged care services

Keep on Dancing is what the science says!

ABC Catalyst is presenting a 2 part special studying the many benefits of dance for the over 65s. Improvements in memory, movement and the creation of new neural pathways in the brain are some of the benefits found in recent studies.

Nia is a combination of 52 moves drawn from dance arts, martial arts and healing arts. Within one class we combine flexibility, agility, mobility, strength and stability (FAMMS) in order to improve balance and fitness. By incorporating FAMMS within the movements, Nia is an integrated way to condition the entire body. People who regularly practice Nia open to a new awareness of their bodies, their internal energies, and their feelings – all of which help them move more efficiently, effectively, and safely in their workouts and in life.

Come along and give it a try. There's no performance pressure. Avalon Nia Classes are held at the Recreation Centre.
6pm Thursdays Classic Nia
9.30am Fridays Gentle Nia
Call or text Mandy Loveday 0411 645 389 - Profile

Nia’s 9 movement forms embrace the 5 Sensations of Fitness:
  • Flexibility
  • Agility
  • Mobility
  • Strength
  • Stability
Dance for health. Avalon Recreation Centre Thursdays 6pm and Fridays 9.30am. 

NLA Ebooks - Free To Download

The National Library of Australia provides access to thousands of ebooks through its website, catalogue and eResources service. These include our own publications and digitised historical books from our collections as well as subscriptions to collections such as Chinese eResources, Early English Books Online and Ebsco ebooks.

What are ebooks?
Ebooks are books published in an electronic format. They can be read by using a personal computer or an ebook reader.

This guide will help you find and view different types of ebooks in the National Library collections.
Peruse the NLA's online ebooks, ready to download - HERE