Warrigal launches 'My Club Connect' - connecting over 60s in the Illawarra

Warrigal has today been joined by Senator the Hon Concetta Fierravanti-Wells to launch its newest service to the community: ‘My Club Connect’.

My Club Connect brings together like-minded people from all over the Illawarra, providing access to social groups and special interest clubs to the over 60s with the goal of helping to build stronger regional community into the future.

The project has been made possible through funding from the Australian Government’s Building Better Regions Fund, with a grant of $68,500, dollar matched by Warrigal. The fund is designed to build the capability of communities to deliver economic and social benefits at a regional level.

Warrigal CEO, Mark Sewell, said the new service aligns strongly with Warrigal’s vision of older people living great lives.

“This new initiative is all about adding to the social fabric of the Illawarra by providing a special and exclusive service to some of the most important and vulnerable people in our community. We are encouraging social participation, cohesion and even providing a sense of identity with this initiative and we’re very excited about that prospect.

“It’s often people in this cohort that retire and find themselves disconnected from their community or struggling to find ways to connect with like-minded people. This new service provides a platform to enable such connections to take place.

“It will also build on Warrigal's existing relationship with the Koori men's group and Koori women's group to encourage participation in activity groups and establish specific groups for the Indigenous community”, said Mark.

My Club Connect offers a multi-tiered club membership, co-designed in partnership with the University of Wollongong, for all older people living across the region, not just Warrigal customers and residents.

It also provides an economic benefit for our regional economy as it directly engages small and medium local businesses and connects them with customers interested in the services they offer.

There is overwhelming evidence that in the Illawarra the population of people over the age of 65 is growing strongly and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future. The ABS has forecast an increase of 30.7% between 2016 and 2026 in the numbers of people over the age of 65 years in Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama. The numbers of people over 65 will increase from 53,227 to 69,583 over that 10 year period. This population growth in older people is not surprising given the desirability of the Illawarra as a retirement destination due to its availability of services and coastal location.

It is clear from research over many years that an active lifestyle promotes wellbeing and physical exercise is vital in improving health outcomes. It is also clear that positive social engagement and inclusion is just as vital.

Clubs already on-board with My Club Connect include Living Connected, the Figtree Follies theatrical group, Shell Cove Activities Group, the Merrigong Music in the Mornings group, the Travel Club, the Albion Park CWA, WEA Senior Connect, the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society, Yoga at Shell Cove and the Brewers Club.

Some of the many businesses on-board supporting this great community initiative include Flagstaff, Pippi’s Café (Shell Cove), Milk & Co Coffee, The Housing Trust, Shellharbour City Library, WEA, Lowes and Coopers Australia.

For more information or to joint the club, visit the My Club Connect website: myclubconnect.com.au

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9 Tips in 9 minutes with Warrigal's CEO (2)

We sat down with our Warrigal CEO, Mark Sewell, and asked him for his best advice for those looking to be successful leaders of the future. Here’s the wisdom he shared with us:

1. Behave, and even dress, like the person above your role. When you do this, the people more senior than you appreciate you and see your value and often ask you to act up in their roles.

2. Get educated and keep it as general as possible. I started as a social worker but then added graduate diploma in public service management and then an MBA with a major in business law. I got good advice by a mentor to not stay a narrow expert but to become a generalist with broad qualifications and skills.

3. Learn to manage stress and pressure as there will be lots of it. I can recall driving home at times thinking that there is no way I can manage the situation that has arisen at work and that a disaster is about to fall on me and the organisation. Usually after a good night’s sleep, some careful consultation and the passage of time things work through to turn out better than you fear. Simple stress management techniques, trusted advisors and experience over time will help you to become a leader who is calm under pressure.

4.  Get a Mentor or at least a mature sounding board. Everyone in a position of significant responsibility needs an independent person they can trust to be a wise sounding board. Not someone who’ll react and defend you but someone who will calmly respond to your issues and guide you through - every good leader needs one.

5. Love the company. This sounds corny but it really helps to do your work, to keep your energy levels up and to bring lots of people along with you as you work together to achieve good results. It’s worth remembering that the only reason you and your team have your positions is because the company needs you. If you can’t love the company and what it does and what it stands for you definitely can’t be its leader.

6. Keep your ego in check. You will achieve almost nothing on your own as a CEO and you will rely more and more on other people and their trust in you and their goodwill to work hard for you. Despite what you’ve heard, no one likes an alpha leader. In fact no one these days likes any arrogance in leadership. Everyone appreciates being appreciated. Be a Chief Encouragement Officer.

7. Remember you will always be on show whether you are on duty or not. All your behaviour, in and out of hours, at work and at home, is ambassadorial. This new media world of transparency and accountability means everything you do or say or tweet reflects on you, on your role, on your team and on your organisation. You’ll have to let go of almost all your personal angry opinions, and that’s not easy for leaders who have lots of them. In fact, I’ll set an even harder challenge, always be positive and good-humoured. Have fun and add a lightness to your responsibilities. People warm to this and the positivity will be really good for you too.

8. The most successful CEOs I have seen have previously been part of management in larger organisations. Consider getting experience in a larger organisation that applies all the management techniques you need then move to a smaller organisation where you will be more senior and not phased by growth and issues that are emerging for the future. It’s hard for selection committees to feel confident in rising stars without experience when it comes to the top job.

9. Finally, wait for your time. See senior management as the long game. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of grey hair and wisdom and decades of experience to steady a ship and guide it to growth.

So there you have it straight from the CEO – and his final words for anyone looking to take on a leadership role?

“The world needs more trustworthy, diligent, clever CEOs so, go for it!”

Mark Sewell2

Kick Start Your Career in Aged Care

If you're interested in a career in aged care, then come along to our next Get Set to Go Information Session.

Where: Warrigal Shell Cove (50 Harbour Boulevard, Shell Cove - cnr Cutter Pde)

When: Thursday, 14 June 2018  

Time: 10am - 11am  

Our Get Set to Go Program will give you the necessary skills and experience as well as the opportunity of ongoing employment with us in the Illawarra!

To register, click here.

GSTG Illawarra Flyer

Research partnership with UOW to improve the lives of older people

Warrigal and the UOW have formalised a research collaboration that will deliver innovative solutions to help improve the lives of older people. Read all about it here.

Pictured: Our CEO, Mark Sewell with UOW Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research & Innovation), Professor Judy Raper

Warrigal Shell Cove Community Celebration

This family-friendly event is open to anyone wanting a glimpse of our brand new suites and 'The Quay' apartments at our Warrigal Shell Cove site, with tours starting at 10:30am. Throughout the day we encourage you to explore the stalls, sample the free tasting platters on offer from the Galley Bistro, and participate in a fitness session and more!

Remember to take a pit stop and enjoy either a coffee from Pippi’s Café with the free 2-for-1 coffee vouchers or kick back while you listen to the ever-popular The Hot Potato Band.

Help us spread the word and share this event with your family and friends. Hope to see you there!

 

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PO Box 435 Albion Park, NSW 2527
Email: warrigal@warrigal.com.au
Fax: 4257 4232

Toll free: 1800 WARRIGAL

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Warrigal was founded by volunteers and they continue to be vital to ensuring our residents happiness. From driving buses to regular visits, even assisting with our business operations, we have many varied opportunities for anyone who would like to donate their time, energy and skills to Warrigal’s residents.

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