The Older Women’s Network Australia is convening its annual conference in Perth this week. Conference delegates will discuss strategies for building older women-friendly communities. An older women-friendly community is a place where older women are actively involved, feel valued, and are supported by an infrastructure and services that accommodates their needs.
OWN Australia is a key representative group for older women’s interests in Australia. OWN Australia President, Aloma Fennell said, “We know that, as the population ages, an increasing number of older women are living alone, are at risk of social isolation, and face growing cost of living pressures. We are very concerned about the lack of services for older women. We want to see more action from government that specifically targets the needs of older women,” said Mrs Fennell.
The conference is unusual in that the average age of delegates at is around 75, with many participants in their 80s travelling from across Australia to attend. “This conference is a wonderful opportunity for our members to stay connected with each other and to talk about issues that are close to our hearts,” said Mrs Fennell.
The main theme of the national conference is connectedness. “Once retired, many women can find it hard to feel connected to their community. Some women end up in a poor financial position and there are increasing reports of older women becoming homeless and isolated. So we want to talk about connection, to each other, to our communities and to the services that we need, such as good healthcare, appropriate housing and advice on issues impacting older women.”
“Members of OWN Australia find great fun in being together and there is nothing we can’t talk about,” said Mrs Fennell. “We are determined to contribute to this debate. We want our voices heard so that we can have more older-women friendly communities for the next generation,” said Mrs Fennell.
The Conference, hosted by OWN WA, is to be officially opened by WA Governor, Her Excellency the Hon. Kerry Sanderson AO on Monday 19th October at the Goodearth Hotel. Keynote speakers include former WA Minister for Seniors, Ms Rhonda Parker, who is currently the CEO of Alzheimer’s Australia WA, and Sandra Cook, Chair of the Economic Security for Women (eS4W) group.
The Confernece will be held on Monday 19th – Tuesday 20th October at the Goodearth Hotel in Perth. The conference will be followed by a performance afternoon at the Don Russell Theatre in Thornlie on Wednesday 21st.
Media Contact: Christine Kershaw PhD on 0429 236 729 or [email protected]
OWN Australia website www.ownaustralia.org.au
Older Women’s Network Australia Older women, wise women.