Issue 12  •  5 February 2020


Ageing Well Update

Welcome back for 2020. I hope that you had a safe and happy Christmas and New Year and were able to find some respite from the heat and smoke. Please continue to listen to your local ABC radio station for the most up to date information about any health warnings or fire danger in your area.

Despite the challenging conditions there is still plenty happening around the shire in February and March. I hope you enjoy reading this edition of Ageing Well Connect.

All Victorians should be prepared and ready to act if bushfire threatens. But some people may need help to prepare their fire plan and to leave early. They could be a relative or a member of your community who may need help leaving early on a fire risk day.

If you live in a high-risk bushfire area, then on a Severe, Extreme or Code Red rated day your only safe option is to leave early – especially if you're frail or elderly, have a physical disability, or have problems thinking clearly or acting quickly under stress.

If this sounds like you, then ask your family, friends or neighbours to help you plan how to leave early, using a copy of the Red Cross Bushfires: preparing to leave early plan.

You can get a copy of the plan by going to the Red Cross website:

You can also request a copy by calling the VicEmergency Hotline on 1800 226 226 or via National Relay Service on 1800 555 677.


Chiltern & Rutherglen Walkability Study - We Need You!

We've partnered with Charles Sturt University to find out how easy it is for older people to walk around our towns.

The study will create a walkability index for Chiltern and Rutherglen which will support town planning and infrastructure, as well as the delivery of the Ageing Well Strategy.

People aged 65+ are being asked to participate by wearing an activity device for a week which will collect the data needed to map where people choose to walk in Chiltern and Rutherglen.

How to get involved?

  1. Wear an activity device for a week which will collect the data needed to map where you choose to walk.
  2. Complete a survey to share your thoughts, feelings and opinions about walking in Chiltern or Rutherglen.
  3. Participate in a focus group in April to provide more in-depth insights about the walkability of your town.

It doesn’t matter how much or how little you walk, we are interested in hearing from everybody over the age of 65 living in Chiltern and Rutherglen.

If you wish to participate in this research by carrying an activity device for one week, please get in touch with Wendy.

Ms Wendy Davison, Charles Sturt University
PHONE: 02 6051 9232

Don't live in Chiltern or Rutherglen?

People of any age living in any town in Indigo Shire can also complete the general survey to help Indigo Shire Council understand your views on how easy is it for people (especially, older people) to walk in their local neighborhoods and town centres.


This is a great video that shows how we understand the language of ageing in different ways, and that not everyone identifies with labels applied to getting older. You might like to watch it or share it with others. If you don't use the internet, you can ask a friend or your local librarian to look it up for you.


Subscribe to the Weekly Update

Our Indigo weekly update is a great way of keeping you informed about what's happening in the Shire. It is emailed out every Friday afternoon. It is also how we communicate important information to our community in emergency situations. During January we sent out special bulletins daily to helpresidents understand the impact of the fires and how and where to access support services.

You can view past issues here

Subscribe to the weekly update here.

National Advance Care Planning Week - 23-27 March

An important part of healthy ageing is being prepared for future events.  National Advance Care Planning Week, is a time to speak up and be heard about what matters most to you!

It is an annual initiative by Advance Care Planning Australia that encourages all Australians, regardless of their age or health status, to make their future health care preferences known.

The initiative challenges people to start conversations with loved ones about what living well means to them and to consider who they would want to speak for them, if they were too sick to speak for themselves.

You can find out more about how to create your Advance Care Plan by visiting the Advance Care Planning Australia website or you can call them for advice on 1300 208 582, Monday - Friday, 9am - 5pm.

You can also speak to your GP or health service to create your Advance Care Plan with the support of your doctor:

Beechworth Surgery
(03) 5728 1566

Indigo Family Medical Centre
(02) 6026 7333

Yackandandah Health Medical Centre
(02) 6028 0130

Rutherglen Medical Centre
(02) 6033 6600

Social Seniors: Social Media & Digital Storytelling

If you’re over 60 and would like to advance your digital skills, broaden your social networks, share your stories creatively, and connect with people on social media, Social Seniors is for you.

Social Seniors is a series of three free 2 ½ hour workshops held over six weeks to introduce you to a range of simple tools that you can use to produce short films on your mobile device and share stories with people with similar interests.

As well as sharing ‘digital stories’ and discovering social opportunities, this program will help you address any concerns you may have around online privacy, safety and security.

You do not need to have extensive online experience – just a willingness to learn!

Coming to a Library Near You:

  • Beechworth: 10.30am-1.30pm - Mondays - 23 March; 30 March; 6 April
  • Chiltern: 1pm-3.30pm – Fridays – 27 March; 3 April; 17 April 
  • Rutherglen: 1pm-3.30pm – Fridays – 24 April; 1 May; 8 May
  • Yackandandah: 1pm-3.30pm – Mondays – 4 May; 11 May; 18 May

Please contact Kate O'Toole for more information.
PHONE: (03) 5728 0879 or 0428 662 412

Coming in March and April!

Keep an eye out for the community information sessions coming to Rutherglen and Yackandandah. Everyone is welcome to attend to find out what you need to know to be prepared for a good death.

You will hear from local professionals including: funderal directors, solicitors, palliative care, DIY coffin makers, grief and loss counsellors, stone masons, cemetary trusts, end of life doulas and advance care directive providers.

WHEN: Tuesday 17 March, 10:30am - 12:30pm 
WHERE: Rutherglen Senior Citizen Centre

WHEN: Monday 27 April, 10:30am - 12:30pm
WHERE: Yackandandah Senior Citizen Centre

More details to follow soon...


Voices in the Museum
Thursday 12 March, 5.30 pm – 6.30 pm      
Burke Museum
Tickets $40.00
Voices in the Museum keeps up the tradition of Opera Scholars Australia giving an intimate concert leading up to Opera in the Alps.

The historically significant Burke Museum in Beechworth will provide an intriguing backdrop, transporting you to a fascinating magical world as the singers perform selections from Mozart's 'The Magic Flute' and other classical favourites.

Limited tickets available, this concert will sell out. Contact the Burke Museum for tickets & information, ph. (03) 5728 8067
Ticket Link:
Facebook Link:

Repair Cafe is repairing broken items together, seeking advice, sharing skills to repair your own items and providing a place for a cuppa and a chat.

You can bring along your broken items for assistance with repairing them, or you can volunteer your skills to help others with repairs.

Beechworth Repair Cafe

WHEN: Every second Saturday
TIME: 11 am - 1 pm
WHERE: Quercus Hall, 30 Ford Street Beechworth
COST: A voluntary contribution
CONTACT: (03) 5728 2386

Next Beechworth Repair Cafe is March 7th 2020. 

Rutherglen Repair Cafe

WHEN: Every fourth Saturday
TIME: 9:30 am - 11:30 am
WHERE: The Rutherglen Men's Shed, 158 High Street Rutherglen
CONTACT - Jeanette - 0409 328 053

Next Rutherglen Repair Cafe is Febuary 22nd 2020 with a special bike maintenance workshop.

What’s on in FEBRUARY?

8th February, Saturday ~ Chinese New Year, Tet, Lantern Festival at Purbrick Hall, Holy Trinity Anglican Catherdal, Ovens Street, Wangaratta 5pm. Come and see cooking demonstration and learn how to use chop sticks. Wear something red and bring a plate of food to share please.

10th February, Monday ~ Dutch Connections meet for a morning cuppa and a chat on all things Dutch at the Beechworth Pantry, 10:30am.

14th February, Friday ~ Kiewa Valley Multicultural Group to meet for lunch at Mount Beauty Neighbourhood Centre 12:00 noon.

19th February, Wednesday ~ Mid-week Break at the Cultural Cottage, The Close; Wangaratta 2:00pm. Come in for some company. Some snacks to share are always welcome.

25th February, Tuesday ~ Pancake Day come to the Cultural Cottage, The Close; Wangaratta for a celebratory brunch at 9:30am. Enjoy some freshly made pancakes.

26th February, Wednesday ~ Monthly Craft Group at the Cultural Cottage, The Close; Wangaratta 2:00pm.

27th February, Thursday ~ Savoy Ladies Social Group will meet for lunch at the Savoy Club Myrtleford. For more information contact Gabriella on 5752 2181.

CONTACT: The Cultural Cottage 3 The Close, Wangaratta. Ph: 03 5721 2090

Indigo U3A Gets Active!

The “Indigo U3A Gets Active!” program begins on 13 February. Soon we will be calling for volunteers to participate in this 12-week program, designed to help us get fit and stay active.

Courtesy of a grant from Indigo Shire Council we will have 12 Fitbits available, so you will able to track your progress and measure your results. Being part of a group you will benefit from supporting and motivating each other.

Gabriella Tange (pictured), Health Promotions Officer, Beechworth Health Services, will present three sessions:
• an introduction on 13 February with advice and tips to get everyone started;
• a ‘check your progress’ session at the midway point on 26 March,
• a wrap up session on 7 May.

If you would like to be involved in the program you will need to be a member of Indigo U3A. There are details below on how to become a member. They will send out a survey asking you to suggest the type of activity you would like to see included in the program.

This program is for all fitness levels, and it will be a lot of fun!


Indigo U3A: providing opportunities for cooperative learning and social contact for senior residents of Indigo Shire.

2020 course descriptions now available: Click here

PHONE: 0431 834 309

Support Groups

Are you part of a support group, or have you ever thought about starting a support group? There are often many members in your community who are experiencing a similar situation to you, who could benefit from getting together to support each other. You may be caring for someone with a disability or chronic illness, are living with chronic disease yourself or have lost someone close to you.

If you would like to promote your support group, or would like information about how to get your own group started, contact Kate O'Toole at Indigo Shire Council.

Phone: 03 5728 8079

Comfort Circle

A support group for those who are coping with the loss of a loved one.

The Comfort Circle is an informal group conducted by community members. It provides an opportunity to share time in the company of people with similar experiences.

The group does not provide advice or counselling, but offers an opportunity to meet and talk with others encountering a loss. Come along for a cuppa, a chat and occasional guest speakers.

10:30 am | 1st Wednesday of the month
Meeting in the back room of the Old Stone Hall
Corner of Priory Lane and Church Streets, Beechworth

Meryl: 0407 004 987
Robyn: (03) 5728 2991


Changing Minds Beechworth – Carer Support Group

A social group of people who care for family members or friends who are experiencing memory loss or living with a diagnosis of dementia.

The Changing Minds Carer Support Group began as an initiative in 2015 when Beechworth became a Dementia-friendly Town. Since then the group has grown in experience and respect in providing a solid grounding of support by shared experience, education and knowledge.

WHEN: 10:30am to 12pm, every fourth Wednesday of the month
WHERE: The Primary Health Meeting room at Beechworth Health Service – enter via reception

2020 Dates
26th February
25th March
22nd April
27th May
24th June
22nd July
26th August
23rd September
28th October
25th November

Interested? Contact Anna Mackinlay at Beechworth Health Service
Phone: 03 5728 0200

Parkinson's North East Support Groups

First Thursday of the month
10:30am - 12:00pm
RSL Hall 
CONTACT: (02) 6051 7400

First Wednesday of the month
10:30am - 12:00pm
Albury- Wodonga Health, CRC Building
CONTACT: (02) 6051 7400

The NHW Parkinson’s group runs every Tuesday for any person in North East Victoria that has Parkinson’s or a similar neurological condition.
1:30pm - 3:00pm
Community Care Centre, Wangaratta
CONTACT: (03) 5722 5555

Call Parkinson's Information Lines to find out more and to request their newsletter.

Parkinson's Victoria
Phone: 1800 644 189 or (03) 9581 8700

Parkinson's NSW
Phone: 1800 644 189 or (02)  8051 1900

VANISH provides support for people separated from their family of origin by adoption, including Forgotton Australians, donor-concieved adoptees and donor-concieved persons.

Mixed Groups are for Adoptees, Natural Parents, Adoptive and Alternative Parents
Adoptee Groups are for Adult Adopted Persons over the age of 18
Mothers Groups are also referred to as Natural Mothers Group

2nd Saturday of each month
Albury Library, 540 Kiewa St

14th December MIXED
14 March MIXED
11th July MOTHERS

For all enquiries please call VANISH on (03) 9328 8611 or 1300 826 474, or email

Out & About

A free service connecting older LGBTI Victorians

Out & About is a peer service connecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or intersex (LGBTI) people across Victoria. We are a free community visitors program run specifically for older members of the LGBTI community. We aim to reduce social isolation and loneliness by creating community connections and facilitating peer friendships.

Out & About connects older people who would benefit from increased social connections with friendly and trained volunteer visitors. Our matched clients and visitors engage in regular visits every week or fortnight, either at home or another location. These social visits could include having a chat over coffee or tea, watching a film, attending a community event, participating in a hobby, game or any other enjoyable social activity.


You can refer yourself or someone else to our service. We welcome people who are not “out” about being LGBTI – we respect this and are very careful with confidentiality. Out & About especially welcomes referrals from people who live in residential aged care, access aged care services, live with disability including dementia, live rurally or regionally, are transgender or gender diverse, intersex, bisexual, Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, multicultural, veterans, women, or live with HIV.


  • LGBTI (or questioning), AND
  • live anywhere in Victoria, including rural/regional, AND
  • One of the following:
    • Living at home receiving / assessed for a Home Care Package, or
    • Living in Residential Aged Care, or
    • aged 60+ (limited number of places available from Sep 2019)
Ada Castle, Out & About Program Manager (Monday to Thursday)
03 9663 2474 / 0466 218 921 /

Meredith Butler, Out & About Outreach and Projects Coordinator
03 9663 2474 / 0455 777 387 /

MAIL: PO Box 21291, Little Lonsdale Street, Melbourne, VIC 8011
FACEBOOK: Like our Facebook page

Community Food - Beechworth


Community Food program provides healthy and nutritious meals free of charge to members of the community in times of need.

Meals are:

  • Made fresh from food sourced from Albury/ Wodonga FoodShare and produce from the community garden
  • Prepared, packaged and frozen weekly by the Beechworth Corrections Centre Community Team.
  • Stored and distributed from Quercus Beechworth.

Meals are available to anyone in the Beechworth community in times of need. This may be those in financial difficulty, families or individuals experiencing grief, loss, trauma or illness or people recently discharged from hospital.

Community Food meals are free of charge and be accessed by either contacting 0408 860 231 (Tues, Wed, Thurs 10 am-4 pm) or alternatively you can drop into Quercus Beechworth at 26 Ford Street

WHERE: Quercus Beechworth, 30 Ford Street, Beechworth
WHEN: 7 days
TIME: 10 am - 4 pm
PHONE: (03) 5728 2388

Promote your organisation!

Ageing Well Connect can be used to promote the activities of your club.
If you would like to contribute an article or other relevant information to Ageing Well Connect, please contact Kate O'Toole on (03) 5728 8079. 

Thank you for reading this issue of the Ageing Well Connect.
You can subscribe, unsubscribe or submit events to Kate O'Toole via email: kate.o'  or by calling (03) 5728 8079.

Ageing Well Connect is provided by Indigo Shire Council. All information is correct at time of publication, please confirm details of individual events directly with the event organisers.

Developed with the support of an Age Friendly Victoria grant from State Government Department of Health and Human Services.
Copyright © 2019 Indigo Shire Council, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
PO Box 28
Beechworth VIC 3747

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Indigo Shire · Kurrajong Way · Beechworth, Vic 3747 · Australia

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