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Two opening events in one

Last Friday 8 April we were very pleased to officially open the new multipurpose facility and seniors exercise park at Carrington Park, Knoxfield.

Ribbons were cut, speeches made and a plaque was unveiled for the multipurpose facility to acknowledge the contribution from the Australian government of $400,000 through the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Grant (LRCI Program) to build the new carpark and turning circle.

The Carrington Park Senior Citizens Centre has been redeveloped into a multi-purpose community facility. The works include the addition of a new entry foyer, activity spaces and amenities, and reconfiguration and update to part of the existing facilities. In addition, the paved external forecourt area between the new Multipurpose Facility and the Carrington Park Leisure Centre, and a new turning circle with bus drop off and pick up area has also been upgraded as part of this project. The goal of the upgrade is to bring the community together, create opportunities for more flexible use of the space for classes, programs and events for U3A, Seniors Over 55s and Bridges Connecting Communities.

The seniors exercise park is the first of its kind in Knox and we are very proud to officially open it and hope to install more in the future.

In partnership with the National Ageing Research Institute (NARI), we have created an outdoor park with specialised exercise equipment for older people at Carrington Park, Knoxfield the first of its kind in Knox. NARI has done extensive research into the positive effects of sustained engagement in physical activity on both mental health and physical outcomes through a community-based program at Seniors Exercise Parks (SEP).

The outdoor equipment features multiple stations specifically designed for older people to improve their balance, strength, mobility and function and clear instructions at each station plus QR codes that link to video demonstrations for on the spot instruction.

NARI was instrumental in arranging for a grant of $25,000 through the Trustee Services State Trustees in July 2021 which was given in the form of a credit towards the purchase of the exercise equipment.

A crucial component of the SEP is to find senior champions to learn how to use the equipment safely and then share their knowledge with their peers on site and help promote the SEP to others in the community. NARI offer a 10 week training course for people willing to become our exercise champions. Training for Senior Champions started this week and we are so pleased to have 7 champions who started their training this week.

We will also be encouraging local allied health professionals such as physiotherapists and occupational therapists to utilise the park and plan to promote Come and try sessions once the Seniors Champions have been trained (mid May).

The new SEP was installed at Carrington Park in February 2022 and has already attracted quite a bit of interest from the community and we hope this will continue once the exercise programs commence.

Carrington Park is located at 20 Oconner Road, Knoxfield.

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