Jun 30, 2020

Knitting provides mental, physical stimulation – and warm clothes for the less fortunate

While the current pandemic has certainly come with a unique set of challenges, in times of crisis it is more important than ever to maintain overall health and wellbeing, both mentally and physically. One of the many activities enjoyed by residents at Cranbrook Residences is knitting, with a group of residents utilising their time to craft woollen items for charity.

Residents at Cranbrook Residences – a boutique retirement community nestled in the Hills District – enjoy ‘active ageing’ via a range of diverse activities and amenities on offer, even while physically distancing.

“Although there are still some restrictions in place due to the pandemic, we encourage our residents to engage in a range of activities to keep them mentally and physically stimulated. This may be as simple as taking a stroll through our beautifully landscaped gardens, where manicured pathways offer the perfect place to get your daily exercise and fresh air.  We also offer crafting activities including knitting,” said Kerry Mann, CEO of Cranbrook Care.

The Cranbrook Residences knitting group has just donated over 64 beanies and 54 scarves for the Bikers Hand, a charitable organisation that distributes much needed donations to people in need and those sleeping rough in the colder months.  More wool has been dropped off at Cranbrook Residences so the group can continue their amazing work, with winter well and truly underway.

Some of the wonderful creations of the knitting group. (Supplied.)
Some of the knitting group’s wonderful creations. (Supplied.)

“We love utilising our knitting skills to help organisations like the Bikers Hand continue their amazing work in our community. It is important to remember during these trying times that there are others much less fortunate than us. My friends at Cranbrook Residences and I love to knit together, while practicing social distancing of course, it’s one of many ways that we can keep both our hands and minds active,” said Wendy, one of the Cranbrook Residences knitters.

Other fun initiatives keeping residents active include creating culinary masterpieces with a weekly recipe club, where residents submit their favourite recipes for their peers to try at home – from bacon and corn chowder to pumpkin scones – delicious delights are being whipped up on a daily basis at Cranbrook Residences. Residents are also encouraged to tap into their creative side by submitting flora and fauna images, as well as past travel pictures for the fortnightly community newsletter.

Depression is common throughout the Australian population, with Beyond Blue citing that between 10 to 15 percent of older people experience depression with about 10 per cent experiencing anxiety – feelings which could currently be heightened as a result of the global health crisis.

The positive effects of mental and physical engagement for older Australians are far-reaching and include:

  • A general boost to feelings of health and wellbeing
  • Increased quality of life
  • A reduction in stress and the likelihood of experiencing depression
  • Increased levels of fitness
  • Greater self-esteem living a purposeful life and keeping mentally sharp.

“Keeping engaged and motivated is so important to overall health and wellbeing. We are always thinking of new ways we can encourage our residents to remain social and active as they age, and we are so proud of how our residents have been utilising their time during the recent isolation period to help those in need. Being mentally and physically stimulated is vital as part of our residents’ health, which is why we all need to maintain a purposeful life as an ongoing priority,” adds Ms. Mann.

Main image: representative from Biker’s Hand alongside Sandra, Wendy, Judith and Olga From Cranbrook Residences.

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