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New Groups For Older Men in Rural Communities

On Wednesday June 27, 56 men braved a freezing cold morning in order to attend the inaugural meetings of two new OM:NI Men’s Discussion Groups at locations in rural Victoria. One group, at Panton Hill, hosted 31 attendees, and the other, at Bunyip, had 25.

Promotion of the Panton Hill group was successful largely due to the assistance of the Nillumbik Shire Council. Community support was willingly given by local Australia Post locations, service groups, retailers, and the local newsletter. Panton Hill Football Club generously agreed to provide the venue for the OM:NI group meetings. “We are delighted by the initial response, and anticipate an ongoing viable men’s discussion group,” said Peter Clark, the group’s facilitator. This group will meet every second and fourth Wednesday of the month.

The new Bunyip group, in the Shire of Cardinia, has received support from that shire as well as assistance from the Casey/Cardinia Foundation. Promotion was carried out through letterbox drops, the Bunyip & District Community News, flyers distributed at retail outlets across the area, and the very able assistance of Bunyip’s local identity – Tony. This help and assistance, including from members of the Outlook group in Pakenham, has ensued this will be a vibrant group that will enjoy all the benefits OM:NI has to offer. Meetings will be held on the first Wednesday of the month at the Bunyip Hall on Main St.

Older Men:New Ideas (OM:NI) Men’s Discussion Groups is a program of COTA Victoria, and run exclusively by volunteers.

For further information, please contact COTA Victoria on 1300 13 50 90 or

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