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Valentines Day chance to celebrate positive ageing

Love is in the air at retirement villages across NSW and the ACT this week.

As part of a new initiative to focus on positive ageing, Royal Freemasons Benevolent Institution (RFBI) will roll out a series of activities to help seniors celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Chief executive Frank Price said the week’s activities would involve 2500 residents across 21 retirement villages.

“We have now extended our thinking into positive ageing, and Valentine’s Day provides the perfect opportunity to explore the universal theme of love and what love means to our residents,” Price said.

“The unifying message of love is something that resonates with everybody and highlighting definitions of love can promote conversations between residents, staff, families and the neighbourhood.

“It’s about seeing people for who they are, not what age they are, and hence the search for everyone’s cherished Valentine memories and love lessons creates an effective way of celebrating what love means to everybody.

“We have many couples in our villages who will be able to celebrate their love for each other, for other residents it will be the celebration of their family and friendships or it may be their love of religion, music or our village pets.”

Price said he hoped the week would encourage interactions between senior residents and the wider community, and place more focus on who people are rather than what age they are.

“Our Activity and Lifestyle Coordinators have been especially imaginative this year and in Tamworth we are staging a wedding with two brides and grooms, page boys and flower girls, music and dancing, wedding cakes with all the residents and staff invited to dress up and attend,” he said.

“In other locations we are holding romantic luncheons with couples, love quiz games, love song dedication concerts with singers, love-based arts and crafts and special Valentine’s Day morning and afternoon teas.

“These series of projects will allow residents to interact with their local communities in a fun, innovative, age-irrelevant way ensuring the focus is on what we have to share not what age we are.”

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