Skip to main content

What activities are on offer in an aged care home?

If you’re considering residential aged care for either yourself or a loved one, you might be curious about the lifestyle and what sort of activities will make up the day-to-day routine.

Scroll to Explore

What activities are on offer in an aged care home h

12 October 2022

Stories | Aged Care Homes

What activities are on offer in an aged care home?

If you’re considering residential aged care for either yourself or a loved one, you might be curious about the lifestyle and what sort of activities will make up the day-to-day routine.

Key points:

  • Aged care homes offer a wide choice of leisure activities to help you stay physically, mentally, and socially active.
  • You can choose to participate in as much or as little as you like.
  • Aged care homes have a dedicated Lifestyle Coordinator and team who manage the activity program and will support you as you settle in.
  • You will have input into what activities are made available, with most schedules tailored to suit residents’ interests and existing hobbies.

“Today is the beginning of your new life!”

This is what Sofia Tofuaipangai, Lifestyle Coordinator at BaptistCare Griffith tells new residents when they first arrive. Having organised leisure programs in aged care services for more than 17 years, Sofia enjoys getting to know new residents and seeing them involved in the activities they enjoy most. She shares the benefits of getting involved, what’s on offer, and how Coordinators are an integral part of BaptistCare’s homes.

What are the benefits of aged care activities?

Healthy mind

Getting involved in activities that keep your mind active, like playing board games or puzzles, joining an armchair travel group or a book club all contribute to healthier overall brain function.

Stay strong and steady

Increasing your heart rate even a small amount each day with activities like walking, gardening, or strength-based exercises has significant cardiovascular benefits which contribute to life longevity. It also gives you better coordination and balance, reducing the risk of future falls.

Socialising makes you feel good

Human beings are social creatures, and even though we may not always feel like socialising we often feel happier when we connect with others.

Numerous studies have shown that meaningful interactions with other people have a powerful effect on our overall wellbeing, boosting mood and helping us to cope better with life’s challenges.

Chatting with fellow residents in an informal setting and connecting over mutual interests can help you to feel comfortable and anchored in your new home.

What is the role of a Lifestyle Coordinator?

Lifestyle Coordinators like Sofia are responsible for planning and organising all leisure activity programs in the home. They get to know residents and understand their needs, interests, values, and spiritual and cultural preferences, ensuring these are incorporated into the activity program.

Lifestyle Coordinators will actively seek residents’ input into what activities are made available and are always open to your suggestions.

Your Lifestyle Coordinator will be a close contact after you move in and will support you as you settle in. They will talk with you about your life experiences and the things you enjoy doing, as well as discussing any concerns you may have.

“Some residents have suffered a fall in the past and are worried about activities that might put them at risk,” says Sofia. “We always ensure our activities are inclusive, with a focus on what you can do, not what you can’t. We want to build up confidence. And residents can always rely on a nearby physiotherapist to keep them steady and strong.”

Your Lifestyle Coordinator will introduce you to like-minded residents with similar interests to help you form friendships and feel part of the community.

What activities are on offer in an aged care home?

Most aged care homes have different leisure activities to accommodate the diverse needs of their community, with programs designed to be inclusive of all residents.

Remember, a full activity program doesn’t mean you have to attend everything!

With lots of options to choose from, residents select whichever activities pique their interest, and balance this with time to relax and recuperate.

Here’s an overview of what you might expect:

- Activities for creative expression

Aged care homes often have a rich program of creative, hands-on activities.

Your home might offer a stitching and quilting group, or a knitting circle. There are also Men’s Shed activities, with some homes opening local markets so that residents can sell their work to the wider community.

Painting and flower pressing are often popular, as is music, with many homes offering residents the opportunity to join a choir, or a musical instruments group.

- Exercise

Aged care homes offer a range of inclusive exercise activities that encourage residents to stay fit whilst having fun.

Many BaptistCare homes incorporate beautifully landscaped gardens, the maintenance of which is often a passion project for our residents.

“Our weekly “Green Thumb” group is always popular,” says Sofia. “It’s a chance to get out in the fresh air, socialise with others, and get some exercise. We all feel better for it afterwards!”

Your home might also offer walking groups, dance classes, or chair-based exercise. You might even like to try something new! At BaptistCare Griffith for example, some residents are enjoying Tai Chi, a Chinese martial art that does wonders for muscle strengthening.

- Puzzles and Games

If you like strategic board games, jigsaw puzzles, or a challenging crossword, there is always the chance to join other like-minded residents for a game or two.

“Many of our residents enjoy coming together for a good game of Scrabble in the evening after dinner,” says Sofia. “It’s become a bit of a routine now, and residents really look forward to it.”

Bingo is a firm favourite too, and there will often be a dedicated space in the residential aged care home for residents to take on epic jigsaw puzzles, alone or as part of a group.

- Cultural and spiritual activities

At BaptistCare, the spiritual wellbeing of our residents is a high priority. Many of our care homes have a chapel, with optional church services occurring several times per month.

We also have chaplains available for one-to-one support whenever you would like – just ask your Lifestyle Coordinator.

Spirituality doesn’t always equate to a practice of faith, and homes will always support residents with other preferred forms of spiritual experience, such as connecting with nature, art, or loved ones.

If you enjoy learning about diverse cultures, you might choose to “armchair travel” to a faraway place. This popular activity usually includes watching a short film about your destination and learning about local art, cuisine, and cultural practices. Don’t forget your passport!

Movie nights and documentary afternoons are organised regularly throughout the week, often led by the residents’ choice of content.

- Outings and special occasions

Celebrating special events like Mother’s Day, NAIDOC week, Oktoberfest, or the Melbourne Cup will be a regular occurrence in your care home, with residents choosing which dates or cultural celebrations to mark.

Families and volunteer carers will often join in the celebrations, providing an opportunity for everyone to dress up and have some fun! And if you like a bit of pre-event pampering, most care homes even offer an onsite salon so you don’t have to worry about travelling.

From time to time, you may have professional musicians and entertainers visit the home to perform concerts, or you might like to join a group outing to watch a show in an external venue.

Lifestyle Coordinators also regularly organise bus trips for residents to get out and about, often to a beautiful nature spot nearby where you can enjoy a picnic and a nice view.

These kinds of special events can be a great way to get a change of scene and enjoy yourself, whilst getting to know your fellow aged care home residents.

- Resident-led activities

There will of course be more casual, impromptu get-togethers too, and sometimes residents like to arrange their own activities.

A monthly book club, for example, might be arranged by residents, or a men’s Sunday brunch. As you settle in and get to know other residents, friendships form and this happens naturally.

Most care homes will also have a more formal resident-led committee, which meets regularly to discuss any proposed changes to leisure activity programs, menu choices, special events, and other resident affairs.

If your nursing home has a café, it can often be a central hub for gathering over a cup of coffee and cake. Your home will also likely offer a monthly happy hour, allowing residents to catch up over a favourite drink or hold a toast to the latest round of birthdays.

Where can I find an aged care home near me?

If you would like to find out more, why not book a tour at one of our aged care home and see for yourself what life will be like?

Use our simple online search tool to explore BaptistCare Aged Care Home locations across New South Wales and the ACT.

Our well-trained staff can support a broad range of care needs to suit each of our residents: from those who are still fairly independent, to the ones with complex needs such as people living with dementia, right through to end of life care. We are here to be that extra support families need in ensuring their loved ones are well cared for and feel safe. Contact BaptistCare to find out how we can help you.

Click the link below to learn more about BaptistCare's

Residential Aged Care | MyTeam | Understanding Aged Care | Financial Guide | Find a centre

Make an Enquiry

If you would like to know more, please contact us on 1300 275 227 or complete the enquiry form and one of our customer representatives will be in touch.