Older adults find fun at YMCA Mount Evelyn Recreation Camp


Image: Older adults (58 - 85 years old) at the Active Adults Outdoor Adventure Camp on April 15.

At 85-years-old there’s a lot Keith has accomplished. But he has never been on an 18 metre giant swing before. 

But proving that you’re never too old to try new things, Keith conquered YMCA Mount Evelyn Recreation Camp’s giant swing as a part of Macleod YMCA’s first Active Adults Outdoor Adventure Camp on Monday 15 April.

“It was very challenging and I was apprehensive, but it was really worthwhile doing!” he said.

Keith was one of fourteen adventurers aged from 58 – 85 years old attended the day camp which is tucked in the outer suburbs in green and leafy Melbourne. Many of the participants bravely swung high in the treetops on the giant swing and also tried archery and bushwalking – all with plenty of laughs and good humour in the great outdoors.

Macleod YMCA Community Engagement Director Chris Arena said the day was about providing older adult community members in Banyule with something new and different that they may not have tried before.

“About 36% of the Banyule area are aged 50 years and over, we know that being active and being social has outstanding benefits for one’s health and wellbeing,” he said.

Macleod YMCA is owned by Banyule Council which is a member of the World Health Organisation’s Global Network of Age-friendly Cities.

At a more personal level, Chris said he enjoyed the chats with the members and hearing about their lives, especially on the bus trip to the camp.

“A lot of them were talking about growing up in the local area around Banyule and what it used to be like. A lot of them talked about their families and some even talked about experiences with war.”

The feedback from participants was extremely positive. And would Keith swing again?

Without delay he replied, “Yes, I would.”

Active Adults Outdoor Adventure Camps will run across other YMCA centres.