Seniors go creative for charity

Residents pictured with their woodwork for Seniors Week.

Photo: Residents pictured with their woodwork for Seniors Week. (Source: Immanuel Gardens Retirement Village)

A group of men in Buderim in Queensland have discovered retirement is the perfect time for them to continue developing their woodworking talents.

More than 20 Immanuel Gardens Retirement Village residents are holding monthly gatherings in their men’s shed to socialise, fine tune their skills and make toys for underprivileged children.   

The theme for Seniors Week 2012, celebrated this week, is Recipes for Living and Loving Life. For these men their shed is a vital ingredient for maintaining a sense of wellbeing that comes from working together and giving back to the community.

Jim Dell, 64, has volunteered for five years leading the two-hour sessions. He said the men cannot get enough of “spending time together doing something strictly geared toward their interests.”

“The men love it and they can’t wait for it. It keeps them stimulated,” he said.

“It’s all hands-on for them – they like their trucks and planes. It’s a buzz seeing them doing something different just for them which is practical and carrying out things they used to do in the past.”

Mr Dell said they sent about 80 items to families who lost possessions during the floods in the Lockyer Valley.

The group members also make wooden tools, sand them down, assemble and lacquer them. One group member, Ken Underhill, built miniature boats for bottles out of match sticks and now has a display at Nambour Museum.

Pictured from left to right are residents Alan Shaw, Cecil Sullivan, Jim Robertson and Neville Williamson.

Immanuel Gardens Retirement Village general manager, Steve Stacey, said Seniors Week was a celebration of the valuable contributions older Australians make to the community.

“These men have brought tremendous joy to underprivileged children’s lives and have brought a smile to the faces of people encountering difficult times,” Mr Stacey said.

“Men’s sheds are important to keep them together as a group and stimulated,” he added.

The Immanuel Gardens Retirement Village men’s shed has been set up in conjunction with several volunteers from the Lions Club.

Lutheran Community Care (QLD)