Mater at Home finds benefits in mindfulness sessions for older Australians

12/Aug/2019     Health

Mater at Home Social workers are running mindfulness workshops in the community specifically for older Australians and have found reported benefits to include both physical and mental health.

Practicing mindfulness is a low impact activity with benefits including reduced physical and psychological symptoms of pain while promoting positive changes in health, attitudes and behaviours.

Clinical Lead Social Worker for Mater at Home Valami Qoro said the program is evidence-based and undertaken with the support of social workers to deliver a friendly and relaxing space for participants to explore the benefits of mindfulness.

“We have run this program in the past and achieved great results and we’re delighted to be able to offer this to the community again,” Valami said.

“We have also seen benefits with improved physical and mental health, relieving stress, lowering blood pressure, reducing chronic pain, improving sleep, anxiety, memory loss and early symptoms of dementia.

“The sessions are grounded in current neuropsychology research, and have an immediate and practical focus. The additional advantage, especially for older Australian’s, is that coming to sessions facilitates friendships, combats loneliness and social isolation.”

Participant Sheila Gillybran (93) said she very much enjoyed coming to the sessions and found she was seeing an improvement in her day-to-day life.

“I personally love it; I have been doing the exercises at home and find it very relaxing. I make sure I do my breathing exercises when I wake up in the morning,” Sheila said.

“This is something I have never done before nor never thought to do but I am glad I have had the opportunity.”

Weekly sessions involve practical tools to implement in daily practice, including guided meditation and other mindfulness exercises. Sessions are themed each week, covering a wide variety of topics including:

·    Be good to yourself

·    Self-compassion

·    Enjoying life

·    Building strength

·    Engaging in the world

·    Being at peace

“Mater at Home’s mindfulness group therapy program involves six, hour long sessions per theme, as learning to better manage your emotions and stress levels takes practice” Valami said.

To gain the maximum benefit from this program, participants are encouraged to commit to attending sessions and a regular practice of mindfulness at home.

If you are interested in Mater at home facilitating their Mindfulness group at your community centre or facility please contact the team and register your interest at materathome@mater.org.au.

Public relations contacts

07 3163 6142