Eight to Eighties—Uniting generations

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AASHA celebrates NSW Grandparents day in its annual forum

AASHA Australia Foundation—an initiative by group of persons of Indian origin, to fulfill the growing need for the care of older people of Indian and South Asian Sub continent—hosted its second annual forum at Pennant Hills Community Centre, on 5 November. This year, the forum focused on two major themes—raising awareness about dementia and celebrating NSW Grandparents day.

Susan McCarthy, general manager services from Alzheimer’s Australia, and Dr. Perminder Sachdev, clinical director of the NPI at Prince of Wales Hospital, gave specialist presentations on dementia, in order to create awareness in our community. Dr. Sachdev, who is also a professor of neuropsychiatry and co–director for healthy brain ageing at University of New South Wales in Sydney, said dementia is a general term for a decline in the mental ability, severe enough to interfere with daily life. While memory loss is an example of dementia, it may not always indicate dementia. Alzheimer’s is the most common type of dementia.

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AASHA has finalised its focus areas for 2017, shared by Bijinder Dugal, also a co-founder and director of the organization. In 2017, AASHA aims at attracting more volunteers to start more social hubs for seniors. AASHA would like to bring various community organisations under one platform for aged care, to create inclusive communities and to make such services available for our ageing seniors.

Cecilia Milani, manager of partners in culturally appropriate care (PICAC), NSW & ACT at the Multicultural Communities Council of Illawarra (MCCI), a not-for-profit organisation, gave a presentation on My Aged Care service.

To celebrate NSW Grandparents day, team AASHA hosted a multicultural entertainment program, followed by high tea. The program was kicked off by radiologist Dr Pradnya Dugal, director of Monsuun Dance Group and a key member of AASHA Advisory board, who mesmerised the audience with her classical Indian dance performance. This was followed by an energising Gidha (Indian-Punjabi traditional dance) performance by the friends of AASHA. The entertainment program concluded with a special group song, sung by grandchildren from the age of eight to the grandparents in their eighties, led by popular Sydney based singer and AASHA member Vinod Rajput.

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The event attracted about 200 delegates, including state MPs like Dr Hugh McDermott MP Prospect, Jodi McKay MP Strathfield, Julia Finn MP, Member of Granville, Daniel Mookhey MLC Blacktown, Gurdeep Singh, Councilor Hornsby and community leaders like John Kennedy, President UIA, Rohitas Batta, President Lions Club of Sydney Indian (Inc.) and Harmohan Singh Walia of GOPIO. Everyone appreciated the efforts of AASHA Australia Foundation to celebrate ageing as a way of life and create proactive awareness about Dementia.

Cheryl Khurana and Rekha Rajvanshi effectively steered the event as MCs. The event concluded with s vote of thanks by Dr Praful Valanju, also a co-founder and director of AASHA.

For more information about AASHA visit www.aashaaustralia.org.au

 

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