Proposed Workshop Dates – 3 December 2014

Hello everyone,

Well DTA Workshops for 2014 are done for the year and while it will be great to have a few weeks off I wouldn’t say I’ll be resting! In around planning my wedding for 20th December I am also getting a jump start on the workshops for next year.

Our first workshop on the 7th February here in Sydney follows on from our very successful “Access to Leisure” workshop held in Newcastle this year specialising in disability focused programming and ideas. I often get asked for workshops for our members who work in this specialised and rewarding field so put it in your diary and look out for the flyer soon if you work in the disabilities sector- want to or want to expand your education, knowledge and networking opportunities in this area. If you have any particular speakers or ideas you would like to have explored, or you would like to present on a topic specific to disabilities please contact me.

Perth Workshop – 15th of November
I flew – for the first time ever – to Perth. Our dedicated members there gave us a great welcome and it was an inspiring day with 5 Takeaway Café ideas put on the table by members after a very informative and educational day. Thanks Marie (for simple and effective craft ideas), Annemarie (for instructions on setting up a choir) and Susan (for the knitting loom demonstration). Dialysis and Kidney disease and how it affects a person’s ability and energy to participate in leisure was first up, with Marianne Pastuch, an RN staying with us for the day who gave her input from a clinical point of view.
Ruth Wilson took us through the inspiring story of Evergreen Melodies – how two men have brought the recordings of lots of great old songs to life (and joined with the Ulvercroft large print books in putting together a collection of CD’s of all the blue and red songs books. If you’d like to hear about it I’m sure Ruth would love to tell you – email me and I will forward your details).

Sharon Grownow from Alzheimer’s Australia got to catch up with some old friends as well as present on the benefits of Montessori influences to programming for clients with dementia as well as continuing the music theme with a YouTube video of Henry and his reaction to listening to the songs he loves (just type in Henry and Music and Dementia and you can watch this incredible transformation too, if you haven’t seen it yet!).

Yoga for Seniors and those with a Disability was enjoyed as we did the practical and simple yoga based movements that can be added to a gentle exercise program to gain the benefits of Yoga.

Grief and Loss was next with an insight into the aspects of WH&S that should be considered when dealing with this aspect of our caring roles including how to address the client/resident that may be dying, their families and how best to assist other clients/residents at this time.

The Cat Haven – a great WA initiative finished up the presentations with how to bring a pet cat into a home environment and the benefits that they have found it brings to the residents (at no cost to the home) look it up on the website if you live in WA!
I’m really looking forward to my next trip west and catching up with all my new friends in WA at next year’s workshops! Thanks Ruth and Gail Hall – it was delicious. Thanks too to the beautiful Little Sisters who give us such a great venue and to everyone that came along and made it such a successful day.

Sydney Workshop- 18th of November
We had 45 people attend the last workshop for the year and people travelling from as far away as Griffith and Wellington. The lecture shaped room took us back to our study days and provided great acoustics and visuals (the venue on the same grounds as our DTA office also provided us with a nice lunch and plenty of sweets to keep us energised and able to concentrate on the great presentations).

Brain Gym practitioner Maxine Bachmayer gave us some practical information on this practice aimed at enhancing the living and learning of people through the science of movement; particularly the cognitive benefits of crossing over the bilateral midline using simple movements. Ruth Van Herk – the only Honorary Woman adopted into the Men’s Shed Hall of Fame and who assisted in the setting up of the now internationally represented Men’s Shed projects through UnitingCare was next up and was a passionate advocate for men’s health and wellbeing.

Pam Davis from Alzheimer’s Australia brought Winsome the puppet along to demonstrate innovations in dementia programming amongst other information and Lauretta Kauldor, an always supportive DTA member and advocate of adopting an activity to meet your client’s needs (amongst other passions of diversional therapy) took us though Activity Modifications and had some great resources on sale from her extensive publications.

Grief and Loss addressed the WH&S aspects of our caring roles and has been received well at many of our National workshops this year while Julie Austin from Parkinson’s NSW received many positive comments in the evaluations as being form a Diversional Therapy back ground she had a great knowledge and respect of how these life affecting diseases and the medications that are used to treat them impact on people’s ability to participate in leisure. The afternoon finished with a whirlwind 6 takeaway cafes that gave lots of great activity ideas to take back to the workplace. Thanks to everyone that supported this workshop and contributed to the great atmosphere and networking opportunities throughout the day.

So to finish up I would like to offer all DTA members a safe and happy end of year and all the fantastic people I have meet through the workshops, conferences and emails a little quote that may be the secret to your passion –

‘In seeking happiness for others, you find it for yourself’ -Anonymous

‘Til next month

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