On Monday the Older Women’s Network Queensland Inc. hosted a “Women Connecting Women in their Communities” event, made possible by the @Investing in Qld Women Grant Program. Queensland Women.

We had a super stimulating panel discussion on the importance of staying socially connected in our communities and the impacts on the health and wellbeing of older women in do so.

There is quite a bit of evidence now available indicating social connections are vital to longevity and the prevention of some mental and physical illnesses.

Thank you to our amazing panelists, Lee Hodgson, president of Older Women’s Network Queensland Inc.; Professor Catherine Haslam from The University of Queensland; Kerri Lynch Program Coordinator at Ipswich 60 and Better Program Ipswich 60 and Better Program Inc.; and Saalihah Seedat, clinical pharmacists. Last but not least OWNQ Ambassador (and former Qld Senator), Claire Moore who did a fantastic job at chairing the discussion. We are so blessed to have Claire part of our network!

We were joined by amazing local organisations showcasing the important services they provide in the community including, ADA Australia, Ipswich Multicultural Projects Inc., Glebe Garden Club, Zonta Ipswich Inc, U3A Ipswich and West Moreton Inc., InCommunity Connect, Jigsaw Post-Adoption Centre Queensland, Ipswich City Council Library, Bloom Hearing Specialists, Ipswich 60 and Better, My Health for Life, Seniors Enquiry Line and Shebah Women’s Foundation.

What a privilege it was to have Ipswich local representatives Mayor Teresa Harding – Ipswich City Council and Councillor Kate Kunzelmann attend, and who reinforced the importance of women’s voices being heard through civic engagement.

Ipswich Multicultural Projects performed Middle Eastern dancing and facilitated some gentle exercise to the tunes of ABBA, and Irene Strong, president of Ipswich 60 and Better Program got the women up to try some Tai Chi!

Our morning ended with gifting each other with words of encouragement – our fridges will be adorned with beautiful hearts.

A big shout out to our wonderful women at our OWNQ Ipswich Branch (Older Women’s Network Qld, Ipswich Branch) who provided so much support on the day. You are awesome!