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14 February 2020

Arcare Taigum café fosters connections with the community

For many people, a cup of coffee is just part of the daily routine, but one Taigum cafe is hoping their brews will bring people closer together.

Arcare Taigum Aged Care has opened its cafe doors to the public with the goal of drawing in customers of varying ages to connect their clients to the wider community.

Arcare State Operations Manager Jennifer Tyrrell said local clients were invited to come in for a coffee and hang out.

“We want people to drop in for a cuppa and have a chat with our wonderful clients, ” she said.

“We think our open café scheme will particularly suit those that are newly retired and may be missing the interaction with other people but we’re happy to see people from all walks of life.

“Social isolation can be an issue for some of our clients, it’s nice for them to meet new people and have different conversations.”

The cafe is already used by groups in the Arcare community, including the Italian social club, who catch up every two weeks.

When asked why they set up the club, Cathy and Kerry, the lifestyle co-ordinators shared, “We were getting more and more Italian residents at Arcare Taigum and we set up this Italian Club to bring them together.”

Now, eight clients and sometimes more will meet up in the café to reminisce on memories of Italy and to practice their English skills.

Italian client Maddalena Frangiosa shared, “We speak both languages, we have coffee and we chat; I really enjoy getting together.”

Melinda Pahany, the daughter of Maddalena, often bakes traditional Italian cakes like biscotti for the group.

“We have coffee, we have biscuits and we talk about some things and just laugh. We try to make all of them laugh. I usually make Italian cake and Italian biscuits and we have it with coffee,” Melinda said.

Another regular face at the Italian social club is Jennifer Mauricio, Arcare Taigum’s cafe barista.

As she serves up the clients’ favourite cappuccino or piccolo, she even picks up a few simple Italian phrases to help her communicate with them.

The café at Arcare Taigum is the place to be as you will see an array of family members, clients and team members enjoying the café atmosphere while sipping on their barista-brewed coffee.

(Excerpts of story from Quest Northside Chronicle newspaper 13th Feburary 20)

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