St. Basil’s Miranda Men’s Group initiative is keeping up social connections for good mental health

The St. Basil’s Homes Men’s Group initiative has become the perfect outlet for male residents of the Miranda Aged Care Home who have now formed a socially connected network of very committed men.

Spiro Stavis, CEO of St. Basil’s Homes NSW/ACT says “On average, one in eight men will experience depression and one in five men will experience anxiety at some stage of their lives1.”

“At St. Basil’s Miranda, our male residents expressed a need to socialise with other men. Our lifestyle team set out to find new ways to encourage male to male contact between residents in a meaningful way. That’s how this monthly male-only social initiative arose."

“By providing our male residents with a regular outlet to connect with others in a social setting we are in fact encouraging good mental health habits for our residents,” adds Stavis.

Ryan Szeto, St. Basil’s Accredited Physiotherapist and Men’s Group advocate explains that the staff at St. Basil's know how to create a great environment to allow the men to open up sometimes reliving old memories, joking around with one another and creating new memorable moments.

“Our male residents often shy away from some of our other activities however they are quick to agree to attend the Men’s Group!”

“It's a great opportunity for the men to get together each month and not have the expectation to engage in anything too strenuous, just chatting and enjoying the food and company.”

“Being a man myself, it was easier to gather some interest to participate in a men's breakfast, and with the expertise of our lifestyle team, we were able to enjoy the company of a few men and discuss things like their work experiences and the struggles they faced in their lives.

“At our monthly men’s gatherings, we sometimes let the conversations flow and grow naturally, and at other times we discuss matters such as work, funny experiences with food, shocking stories from their youth and any other hot topics of the day.”

“During one session, the men discussed their experiences fishing and going out to sea on their boats, and one gentleman shared a story about how he found a rat's tail in his sausage roll!” explains Szeto.

The small group of a few men quickly turned into our '12 Happy Men'. These men are regular attendees, are fully engaged and look forward to the monthly gathering – they wouldn’t miss it for anything.

The Men’s Groups initiative will soon form part of the lifestyle and wellness program at St Basil’s other facilities across Sydney starting with St. Basil’s Randwick Home.

To find out about more of our initiatives such as St Basil’s Day Centres program and our In-Home Care services please follow St Basil’s NSW/ACT on Facebook, call us on 9784 3200 or visit stbasils.org.au

  1. https://www.beyondblue.org.au/media/statistics

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