Those who can, do. Those who can do more, volunteer!

Kia ora and welcome to this issue of The Old Times. It's been almost 10 years since joining the not-for-profit sector and with International Volunteer Day happening on the 5th December, I am reminded of how fortunate I am to spend my days working alongside our dedicated, selfless and humble volunteers. You are priceless and we are all very grateful for the contributions you make not only at Age Concern, but in all that you do!

The world is hugged by the faithful arms of volunteers -
Terry Guillemets

Best wishes 

Lucy Willard
Membership and Events Coordinator


It's Time to Celebrate and Say 'Thank You'
To Our Members and Volunteers!

Please join us at the Celebrating Age Centre on Friday 6th December from 12pm - 2pm to celebrate the end of the year, the upcoming festivities, and most importantly, for us to say thank you for all of your contributions to Age Concern. Volunteers are more than welcome to bring your visiting or shopping clients along.

Please  could you RSVP by Monday 2nd December with numbers attending and any dietary requirements.
Waikato Regional Theatre project is now ‘Live’

Kelvyn Eglinton, Momentum Waikato Chief Executive

It was with much joy that Momentum Waikato was finally able to declare the Waikato Regional Theatre project as ‘Live’, following the Prime Minister’s 31 October announcement at Embassy Park of our successful Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) application.

Since that pivotal moment, the outpouring of support and well-wishes we’ve received from across our community has been quite humbling. 

But we still have much immediate work to do to confirm the project’s budget, the pricing on its design details and its resource consent, ahead of getting underway with construction in the first quarter of 2020.

The Waikato Regional Property Trust, which will own the Theatre on behalf of the community, will soon be completing the land transfers, tendering and contracting the build, setting up the operating companies to deliver shows, educational programs and promotions, and beginning the search for an inaugural General Manager.

Meanwhile the development team for the adjacent new Victoria Developments hotel slated for the street side of the site will be finalising its design and engaging with prospective accommodation providers.

A two-year build followed by a ‘soft opening’ phase while systems are being commissioned and staff trained mean the grand premiere opening of the Waikato Regional Theatre is currently scheduled for April 2022.
It is a good time to revisit the ‘why’ of this transformational project. Continue reading

Security, facilities alleviate loneliness - study

Living in a friendly, secure neighbourhood is one of the key ways to keep loneliness and isolation at bay in older age, according to a study of over-65s living on the Kāpiti Coast.

And aspects of neighbourhood design, like the provision of footpaths and lighting, and facilities such as transport, libraries, shops and services can also have an effect on the wellbeing of the elderly.

The Health in Ageing Research Team (HART) at Massey University’s School of Psychology has just released the findings of a study called Social Connections carried out on behalf of Age Concern Kapiti and the Kāpiti Coast District Council.

Lead researcher Professor Christine Stephens says three quarters of the 919 respondents reported no loneliness, while a fifth reported moderate or high levels of loneliness. However, a more nuanced measure of loneliness revealed that nearly half of those who took part in the study (from Ōtaki, Waikanae, Paraparaumu, Paekakariki and Raumati) experience feelings of loneliness.

"Although the Kāpiti Coast has long been a favourite retirement venue, the levels of loneliness reported by older residents are similar to those found in other surveys across New Zealand," Professor Stephens says. Click here to read more

Rest homes struggling to care for patients 'admitted to die', study finds

Stretched hospitals and hospices are sending elderly, terminally ill patients to die in rest homes – but staff are struggling to cope, a study says. 

The Otago University, Wellington study revealed the burden aged care facilities face when caring for patients discharged from hospitals and hospices to die. 

In the past those patients would have been cared for in public hospitals and hospices but those facilities were under increasing pressure to free up beds for acute or urgent care, the study said. 

"Hospitals were considered inappropriate and costly for those dying over weeks to months of incurable illness, and hospice capacity is increasingly strained."

The study, published in the New Zealand Medical Journal this month, recommended the Ministry of Health fund some aged care facilities to provide specialist end-of-life care. Click here to read more

Don’t always expect antibiotics from your doctor
November 2019 World Antibiotics Awareness Week is 18-24 November, and the Choosing Wisely campaign is reminding New Zealanders not to expect antibiotics every time they go to the doctor.

Choosing Wisely encourages patients and health professionals to discuss the risks and benefits of tests, treatments and procedures with their health professional, and to avoid those that are unnecessary.

Choosing Wisely clinical lead Dr Derek Sherwood says antibiotics aren’t always the best treatment for some common illnesses.

“Colds and flu can’t be fixed by antibiotics because they’re caused by viruses, not bacteria. They can instead often be treated by allowing your immune system to fight off the virus, taking over-the-counter medicines for pain or fever, and using home remedies such as, for sore throats, gargling with warm salty water.”

He says another area of potential misuse of antibiotics is urinary infections in older people.

“Older people are sometimes given a urine test, even if they don’t have any symptoms of a bladder infection. This test then may come back positive for bacteria in the person’s urine. However, bacteria in urine is not uncommon and does not mean you have a bladder infection. Antibiotics may then be prescribed to help an infection that is not actually there.

“Antibiotics will not help in this situation – they don’t prevent urinary tract infections, help bladder control, or help memory problems or balance in older people.”

He says people don’t become resistant to antibiotics, bacteria do.

“Using antibiotics when they’re not needed means bacteria have a better chance to develop resistance to antibiotics. This resistance stops an antibiotic from working effectively against bacteria. It makes infections difficult, and sometimes impossible to treat.

“Bacteria that cause infections like pneumonia, gonorrhoea and tuberculosis have all started developing antibiotic resistance.”

The Choosing Wisely website has a number of resources for consumers with information about when antibiotics may not be needed, and alternatives for treating common illnesses. Avoiding infections in the first place is also important as this reduces the amount of antibiotics that have to be used and therefore the opportunity for germs to develop resistance to them.
Join Yumi Yoshida in the Members Lounge on Friday 29th November at 11.30am and learn the art of Origami
Yumi has been a Trustee of the Waikato Japanese Community Trust since 2012. She has held Origami workshops every year at schools and cultural events in Hamilton, and currently has an Origami display at the Hamilton Central Library on the ground floor.

Weekly Fixtures At The Celebrating Age Centre

A wide range of activities take place weekly and monthly at the Celebrating Age Centre, see below and contact us on 07 838 2266 for more details. 

9.30-10.15: Zumba Gold
10.00-11.30: Greypower Seminar (no charge)
11.00-12.00: Tai Chi

9.30-10.30: Sit and Be Fit

10.00-12.00: Chinese Golden Age Society Programme

10.00-11.00: Upright and Active
1.00-2.30: Tai Chi
1.00-3.00: U3A French

9.30-11.00: Friday Education Seminar Session:

22 Nov - Life and Travels with Don Scarlet
29 Nov - Brent - South Australia Ambulance Service Exchange
7 Feb - Welcome to 2020
14 Feb - Valentines Day - A Walk Through the Ages
21 Feb - Cascades - Retirement Apartments
28 Feb - Jodie Collins - Confessions of a Business Owner

(Most activities have a small cost component)

RECIPE: Ambrosia

It's that time of the year to treat yourself to some festive cheer. This recipe can be found on the Senior Chef website. 
Read the latest issues of Senior Watch for articles on topics including:

Fraud film to tell victims’ stories - Read more

All Age Concern needs is clients - Read more

Give Baby Boomers their dues Read more

Read these recent issues in full:

Senior Watch 11th November 2019     18th November 2019