Eating with friends a great success

in Tasmania has older people within the community as its central focus, catering for both their health and well being.Eating with Friends is a project that aims to address social isolation and poor nutrition habits by developing innovative and cost effective ways for older people to eat with others.

It gives participants a chance to enjoy a meal in the company of others who are in similar situations to themselves.

“Meals on Wheels and Community Nutrition Unite were the parties who instigated and managed the pilot project,” said Narelle Calphy, Manager Community Development, Glenorchy City Council. “Prior to the conclusion of the pilot, Council and the State Government entered into a partnership agreement to take up the recommendations from the pilot study to continue the project and extend it beyond the suburb of West Moonah.”

There are a number of agencies involved in the running of the project, including community groups, schools and service providers. In total there are now 11 Eating with Friends groups operating.

“Most of the groups charge a small fee to participants, usually around $5 for a three course meal and this covers the cost of running the groups,” said Council’s Community Development Officer, Rebecca Essex. “Many positive outcomes have resulted,” said Narelle Calphy. “There has been an increased number of older persons being referred by word of mouth, and new friendships being formed outside of the Eating with Friends lunches.”

For further information, contact Narelle Calphy on (03) 6274 0751.