The Friendship Aged Network was an initiative by the Evolve Housing Residents Council that commenced in 2006. The FAN was designed to provide care for our most vulnerable and socially isolated residents of Evolve Housing who are over 55 years old.
Our resident volunteers contact the aged residents weekly to connect socially and check on their general well-being. Our volunteers come from different ethnic backgrounds which helps them communicate with our diverse groups of residents. Social gatherings and outings are organised throughout the year for our aged residents to promote social inclusiveness. These include the Annual Nepean Belle Cruise, day trips throughout Sydney and Annual End of Year Lunch event.
My name is Susan. I am a resident recipient of FAN and this is my story.
‘I have been involved with Evolve Housing for four years. I am a retired nurse after 35 years in the hospital system. I became a widow nine years ago after losing my husband to cancer; three months earlier I lost my twin sons aged 28 in a car accident. I now live alone with my beloved dog Jessie. I became involved in a number of fundraising events that enabled me to raise sufficient funds for aged care and people with a disability. I was recognised for my efforts by being awarded ‘The Carers Award for 2002’. This year 2013 has been a nightmare for me with continuous hospital stays and overcoming breast cancer and radiation. We all have been dealt some very hard challenging times in our lives but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. That’s when Evolve Housing became such a big part of my journey and recovery. The outings that they provide are outstanding. It gives me a chance to interact with other people and something to look forward to especially if you are housebound. Our volunteers, what wonderful people they are! You cannot put a price on the care and compassion they show to each and every one in the FAN. They provide not only our weekly calls, which we all wait for, but also emotional support when you’re at your lowest. They fill that emptiness when you think all is lost. They are angels without wings. To all of you out there that may read this please don’t be afraid to reach out, you will find some wonderful people out there who really do care. Take it from me I am talking from experience’ written by Susan.