Bookmarks and magnets now available

Seniors Rights Victoria WEAAD bookmarks and magnets are now available.  Please see the designs below:

SRV Bookmark

SRV Magnet

You can order them directly from Frank at Lexicon Art on (03) 9946 5193 or


    • 250 (minimum quantity) – $177.10 inc GST
    • 500 – $202.40 inc GST
    • 1000 – $214.50 inc GST


  • 150 (minimum quantity) – $265.10 inc GST
  • 250 – $308.00 inc GST
  • 500- $368.50 inc GST

Please note: payment will be required prior to production of the above items as confirmation of order. Bookmarks usually take 4-5 working days from time of payment/order and magnets 7-10 working days.


WEAD 1-2

How to order purple ribbons

Purple ribbons for WEAAD may be ordered directly from Frank at LexiconArt. To ensure your ribbons reach you by June 15, orders should be placed as soon as possible. For up to date pricing on ribbons and other merchandise, please visit the merchandise page.

Purple balloons are another good, cheap option and are readily available from supermarkets and gift stores.

WEAD 1-2

photo Whitehorse purple cake

The Purple Recipe Campaign

Tanya Bartolini, author of Blending the Cultures and owner of The Kitchen Bench website, has generously shared a recipe for her grandmother’s Sacoiardi Cake… with a purple tint! – just for WEAAD.  Tanya and the Kitchen Bench are very proud to be a promoter and ambassador for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) in Queensland. The Purple Recipe Campaign is designed to raise awareness and encourage everyone to share a recipe which incorporates the colour purple to help shed more light on the serious issue of elder abuse.

We thought her Purple Recipe Campaign was great and wanted to share it here too. If you have a great purple recipe, share it via the blog – who knows, we might be able to have everyone eating purple on Sunday June 15!

“This is a family recipe that my grandmother has passed on through each generation and that we enjoy still today at all of our family gatherings. This is definitely one of my favourites.”

INGREDIENTSphoto Whitehorse purple cake
 500ml whipping cream
 2 tsp of natural purple food colouring
 1 tbsp white sugar
 30 savoiardi biscuits
 1/2 can of evaporated milk
 1/2 cup of marsala wine or sweet sherry
 blueberries to decorate


  1.  In a large bowl combine the evaporated milk and marsala.
  2.  In a mixing bowl whip the cream with the sugar until thick and fluffy.
  3.  Remove 1/3 of the whipped cream, set aside in a bowl and add the food colouring to the cream and mix through well.
  4.  Dip a biscuit into the marsala mixture and then place into a baking or serving dish. Repeat this process until you have created your first layer of biscuits, you will use about 9 – 10 biscuits per layer.
  5.  Top the first layer of biscuits with a thin layer of the uncoloured whipped cream.
  6.  Repeat the step above dipping the biscuits into the marsala mixture and then create another layer of biscuits on top of the existing layer.
  7.  Continue with the steps above until you have created a cake 3 layers high of biscuits and cream.
  8.  Cover the outside of the cake with the purple coloured whipped cream and then top with blueberries to decorate.

See more at: or check out a full collection of purple recipes at

Seniors Rights10

Seniors Rights and Elder Abuse

Seniors Rights10Elder abuse generally occurs within a relationship of trust, with the highest proportion caused by sons and daughters.

Financial abuse most common

Seniors Rights Victoria (SRV) manager Jenny Blakey said that financial abuse was the most common form of abuse reported through the SRV helpline. In acknowledgement of that fact, this year’s annual SRV WEEAD forum, Human Rights are Ageless, will focus on how assets and funds are transferred through generations.

Men and women can be affected

Another free forum, Legal Matters for Older Fellas, will provide an opportunity for older men to discuss issues of concern with lawyers and other professionals.

“Only one third of our callers are men,” Ms Blakey said. “There is a strong stereotype about men being in control, so it can be harder for them to talk about being abused within the family.”

It helps to build confidence

Ms Blakey said a lot of victims of elder abuse, regardless of gender, are initially reluctant to make changes that could benefit them.

“Some people have been so abused within their situation that they lack a lot of confidence to make those changes,” she said. “If the abuse is coming from a son or daughter, they also want to maintain that relationship.” SRV offers free confidential advice through their helpline, as well as ongoing assistance from lawyers, social workers and other advocates, if needed.

“We want to help older people have the confidence to assert, manage and preserve their rights.”

The whole community needs to be involved

SRV also runs training in the workplace, particularly with home and community care organisations, to help staff identify and report elder abuse.

“Carers often worry that they are going to offend the victim if they raise the issue.

“We suspect that a lot of elder abuse goes unreported, because of course we only hear from those who speak up about it.”

Ms Blakey said WEEAD is an important date for the whole community, not just older people. Photography students of Bendigo Senior Secondary College have shown their support through a collection of images representing older people active in sport, dance and other age-defying activities. Ms Blakey said the exhibition, entitled The Best Is Yet To Be, highlights the positive contribution seniors make to community life, which often goes unnoticed.

We need to respect older people

“We live in a culture that values youth,” Ms Blakey said. “Older people are not accorded the same respect as younger people,” she said. “It’s really important that we have an integrated and respectful society because our lifespan is longer than ever before.”

Mature Age Jobseekers on the Rise

The 2014 Federal Budget included many new initiatives that will affect mature age workers and Seniors. Some have been received well others, others not so well like the proposed increase in the pension age to 70.

While we can sit around and debate the merit of these programs, what we can be certain of is that something does need to be done to increase the workforce participation rate of mature age workers.

Broadly speaking, the last 30 years have seen an increase in participation among Australians in their 50s and 60s. However, in more recent times, this growth has plateaued. So what does this tell us? Well, a couple of things.

Firstly, this indicates that there has been an increase in the number of people in their 50s and 60s who want and are more importantly, able to continue working into their ‘retirement’ years. They are not their parents’ generation and many intend to work beyond what their parents would have.

Secondly, it tells us there is still an underutilisation of this labour force, with Australia underperforming when compared to other OECD countries, including the UK, USA and New Zealand.

As a job board specially tailored for mature age workers,, can also vouch for this ‘willingness’ to continue working. We have seen a consistent rise in our database of mature, experienced and knowledgeable jobseekers who are looking for employment opportunities. Currently, we have close to 30,000 registered jobseekers on our site.

Adage was established to provide a dedicated platform where age could be embraced and celebrated. The fact that a specialised site has resonated with so many older workers also suggests that this talent pool is finding it tough in the traditional job hunt market.

Unfortunately ageism does exist in our community and within organisations. Negative stereotypes have taken over from businesses realising the true value that exists within this workforce. However, with the 45+ age bracket becoming the fastest growing labour market segment in Australia, employers will simply not be able to sustain their workforce if they continue to ignore this demographic.

Encouragingly, at Adage, we have seen a recent increase in the number of employer enquiries and advertisements. The proposed budget announcement to reward employers of unemployed jobseekers aged 50+ with a $10k payment incentive has certainly put older workers on the radar. While these cash incentives have had little impact in the past, they do appear to help raise awareness about this very valuable talent pool.

However, what we need is large corporates and industry groups to take a leadership position and actively promote and recruit mature age workers, not just because it is a necessary thing to do, but also because it makes good business sense.

Older workers will not only reward employers with loyalty, dedication and increased productivity, the also act as great mentors for younger employees. Up to four generations could now be working within one organization. Employers therefore need to implement strategies encouraging a cohesive working environment – mentoring is one such strategy.

While connecting mature age workers with age friendly employers is Adage’s number one priority, we also remain committed to educating employers on the benefits of hiring maturity and raising awareness across the community.

In the end, age is the one thing we all have in common, so it is time that it is embraced rather than ignored.


Written by

Heidi Holmes

Managing Director of, Australia’s leading job board for mature age workers and age friendly employers.

69 love sex senior

69 Love Sex Senior

69 love sex seniorNone of us wants to think about our grandparents “doing it”. We pretend to ourselves that at a certain age, people lose interest in sex. We keep it in the realm of the young – those with firm bodies, unbridled passions and, well… flexibility.

In 69 Love Sex Senior, filmmaker Menna Laura Meijer not only challenges our denial of older people as sexual beings but also explores their broad variety of sexual and romantic experiences. She shows that sex and love continue into older years in just as many different forms as we see amongst the young. Together with her wonderfully warm and entertaining selection of older people she explores a broad spectrum of experiences and expectations.

During the course of the film, we meet Atie and Kees, inseparable, in love and still excited by each other after 60 years together. Hans, a bi-sexual man who after a lifetime of promiscuity discovers the joy of love with 50 year old Xander, proclaiming that it has him “blowing trumpets”. Wietske describes the intensity of the love between her and her now senile husband, as she seeks comfort from her boyfriend, a recent widower trying to fill the void left by his wife.  Gerard and Addy, in their early 70’s, reconnect to enjoy the passion they’d momentarily tasted during an experimental partner swap in 1968.

Every story has its own insights, its own warmth. Although confronting at times (there are sex scenes included), Meijer’s slow, quiet approach to story-telling allows time to breathe in the various snippets of her subjects very personal lives, to absorb them and be warmed by them. It is a slow-paced film but it feels right – it feels like it moves at the pace of those telling their stories.

For anyone who has ever thought that love was for the young, this is a heartwarming film that will convince you there is plenty of reason to hope for a passionate third age.

69 Love Sex Senior is showing as part of the Human Rights Film Festival.


Australian Premiere

When: Tuesday 20 May, 8:45pm

Where: Australian Centre for the Moving Image

Price: Full $18 | Conc $16 | Group (6+) $14 (group booking via phone only)

Thoughts on elder abuse

It’s more than a slap of the cheek

And a bruise on display

It’s more than a tear on a wrinkled cheek

Or a failure to pay

It’s a fearful look in a watery eye

A downturned mouth

And a heartfelt sigh

Pity those who treat their loved ones

With disrespect

We pray they never experience abuse and neglect


Written by Caroline Granger

celebrate living history project 2

Celebrate living history

The smile from a senior sharing a story with a university student is what makes me happy.  

celebrate living history project 2Sometimes we forget to look beyond age and realise there is a person underneath who has a rich history to share.

I remember doing an interview with a former teacher and she said “Bev, when you get old, you too will become invisible.”

Maybe because the blinkers have been taken off my eyes I asked “But how I can see you?”

She told me sometimes she could be physically there, but ignored, people don’t think she is special just a little old lady.

Through establishing not-for-profit Celebrate Living History, I aim to make seniors feel important and most of all visible. 

I believe no one should feel invisible and have created an internship program, which connects tertiary students with seniors.

What I love about the two different generations is it does not matter how old you are, there is a friendship to be shared. I want to break down barriers and make seniors feel valued.

I have been working on Celebrate Living History for the past three years and I have learnt so much. One of the seniors that I had grown close to asked, “What have you learnt in three years?

If I were to look back, I learnt that it does not matter what status, job or life experience you have it is about the person inside. I have just graduated from a Certificate III in Aged Care and my placement at a nursing home made me see life on the other side.

At first I felt sorry for the residents, but then I got to know them. Some of the residents despite their position kept a bright outlook on life; it is the small things that count, like being able to stroke your cat everyday to that cheeky extra slice of pizza. It is about being in the moment and appreciating what you have.

Additionally I have learnt, how important it is for a senior to socialise, as it improves their quality of life so much. Just taking time out to hang with a senior means so much to them, everyone should feel important.

celebrate living history project 3This is just the start of the knowledge I have gained. I want students to follow in my footsteps to learn and make valuable life-long friendships with the older generation.  

My focus this year will be on Celebrate Living History reaching more tertiary institutes so that further students can learn, document and cherish a senior’s story, just like I have.


Written by

Bev Wilkinson

Founder of Celebrate Living History


The aged rights service logo

Prevention of financial abuse of people living with dementia

The World Report on Violence and Health (2002) defines elder abuse as :

“a single or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust which causes harm or distress to the older person”

Elder abuse can take many forms including physical psychological emotional sexual and financial abuse. It can also be the result of intentional or unintentional neglect.

World Health Organisation defines financial abuse as “the illegal or improper exploitation or use of funds or resources of the older person.

The purpose of this paper is to outline some recommendations as to how the laws in NSW could be modified to provide better protection for an older person who is the subject of financial abuse. This abuse is often perpetrated by someone they know, either family or friends, who may have been appointed their enduring power of attorney.

Power of Attorney

An enduring power of attorney appoints a person to manage the older person’s legal affairs on their behalf and continues to have operation when they no longer have capacity. An Enduring power of Attorney gives the attorney authority to manage legal and financial affairs including buying and selling real estate, shares and other assets, operating bank accounts and spending money on the older persons behalf. The attorney has the same powers as the older person to deal with the person’s financial affairs and has a legal obligation to act in their best interests.

An enduring power of attorney can be specified to commence when a person lacks capacity to manage their financial affairs as determine by a general practitioner in consultation with a geriatrician.

When an attorney acts outside the scope of the power and the older person lacks capacity, this is theft by the attorney against the older person. An attorney cannot give gifts to themselves or third parties or gain a benefit to themselves, where the older person lacks capacity, unless the gift or benefit is authorised in the power of attorney document.

Recommendations to Regulate Operation of Enduring Power of Attorney

  • A register for enduring powers of attorney be implemented at the Guardianship Division of the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal. In this way solicitors can conduct searches determine who the attorney is for the older person with capacity issues in order to make enquiries about management of their affairs. If the attorney is not fulfilling their responsibilities applications can be lodged for a review of these documents by persons concerned for the welfare of the principal, quickly.
  • If abuse has occurred by the attorney under an Enduring Power of Attorney and they have failed to act in the best interest of the older person or outside the scope of the power of attorney, there may be a criminal offence and certainly grounds for civil action. It is suggested that it would assist police if the Power of Attorney Act 2013 set out a list of criminal offences where an attorney breaches their obligations.

 Potential Offences:

  • Protecting interests of principal and keeping funds separate;
  • Not giving gifts to third parties or the attorney unless expressly authorised
  • Keeping any property received on behalf of the donor in safe- keeping
  • Keeping an adequate account of dealing with principals assets
  • Avoiding abusing his position by obtaining a profit or causing a conflict between the principal’s interests and the attorney’s interests.
    • Dedicated Police positions should be created for vulnerable and elderly people with specialist training on prosecuting attorneys who misuse the authority who have experience in dealing with the elderly and challenges of dealing with an older persons with varying levels of capacity. Evidence may be able to be gathered on basis of written records (bank statements) in some cases rather than a statement from the older person.
    • Attorneys should be educated on their roles as attorney and the circumstances that will constitute a conflict of interest and therefore a breach of their fiduciary obligations. If the attorney or a third party is to obtain a benefit from the principal’s funds then this must be expressly authorised in the document otherwise the attorney is in breach of their fiduciary obligations to the principal. Some potential conflicts that lead to financial exploitation are:
  • Attorney spouse selling joint owned property to place principal in aged care and purchase home in own name with main amount of proceeds.
  • Attorney carer remaining in home rent free whilst principal placed in aged care.
  • Attorney accepting contribution of principal to extensions in home and then placing principal in aged care.
  • Attorney taking out reverse mortgage on principal’s home to pay self for caring services provided to principal in the home.
  • Attorney cannot gain these benefits from role as attorney unless expressly authorised.

It is suggested that if the attorney’s signature was also required to be witnessed by a solicitor upon acceptance of the appointment this would give a solicitor an opportunity to explain conflicts to the attorney prior to their acceptance of the appointment.

TARS was a member of the advisory group for an Alzheimer’s Australia NSW research project on preventing financial abuse of people with dementia. The findings and recommendations from this research project will be published in Alzheimers Australia NSW discussion paper to be launched on June 18 at NSW Parliament House.

Written by:

The aged rights service logoMelissa Chaperlin, Solicitor

The Aged-care Rights Service