Thursday, October 1 marks the International Day for Older Persons - a United Nations initiative that encourages the celebration of seniors in our community.
From 2020, the date also marks Probus Day.
Established in Australia in 1976, Probus is a not-for-profit organisation with more than 110,000 members.
Probus is all about social connections in retirement. Probus clubs provide the opportunity for retirees and semi-retirees to come together in their local community, make new friends and participate in a wide range of activities.
Silvana Martignago is the CEO of Probus South Pacific.
"During the pandemic, the majority of our Probus club members have remained connected with each other by phone and/or technologically, minimising the increased risk of isolation and loneliness," Ms Martignago said.
"Our clubs and their members are embracing the recent challenges with video conferencing regularly and with restrictions permitting, many clubs are conducting their activities on a smaller scale complying with health guidelines and restrictions.
"We are acutely aware that social contact is essential in today's world, now more than ever. It is widely accepted that older persons who are members of social groups are less likely to develop mental health issues.
"Probus provides essential friendship based social connections for older Australians," Ms Martignago said.
The inaugural Probus Day theme is all about Staying Connected with many Probus clubs planning celebrations during the month of October to mark the day.
While some of the celebrations and events may be constrained or conducted in a virtual format, depending upon the level of restrictions, the key is to celebrate retirement and Probus members are experts in demonstrating just that.
Ms Martignago encourages anyone who is approaching retirement, semi-retired or retired, to find out more about how Probus can help them to extend their social circle and stay connected.
To find your local Probus club, visit the Probus website at www.probussouthpacific.org or call 1300 630 488.