Harbourside Lodge Residents Enjoy A New Artistic Outlet

Photo kindly supplied by Portland Observer
Thursday, 16 November 2017
Harbourside Lodge residents in Portland are getting in touch with their artistic talents thanks to a new program.

A weekly arts class run by South West TAFE and led by education teacher Therese Coffey is giving the residents a new artistic outlet.

The program is supported by Portland District Health volunteers and Harbourside Lodge staff.

Harbourside Lodge activities coordinator Karli Cain said residents were responding positively to the program.

I had quite a few residents who don't often participate in activities stay and enjoy it, Ms Cain said. Because we have nearly one-on-one support, they get the full support they need.

We have great community involvement and the residents are learning new skills that they enjoy.

The program started with residents drawing pictures of flowers on a canvas. There will be a different art activity during each of the six weeks of the program.

Ms Coffey said the residents would be exploring visual arts, mainly in painting and drawing in different mediums using easy to handle resources suitable for elderly people.

Two South West TAFE adult students with disabilities and a support worker assist Harbourside Lodge as part of a unit about being an effective volunteer.

It's great because it gives the elderly folk a new focus and a visual arts outlet for them. It's something new that they’re really interested in and enjoying,; Ms Coffey said.

The program reflects the findings of recent research by international research group, the U-Age Consortium, led by La Trobe University professor of Nursing Dr David Edvardsson.

The research found that older people in aged care can benefit from health-promoting activities and interventions that build on and promote what they actually like doing.

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