Active Retirement – Summer 2005

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Compliments of

The Active Retirement Association was founded in Athenry in May 2000.

We are part of a Federation  of Active Retirement Associations (F.A.R.A.) which now has over 300 A.R.A’S with more than 18,500 membership nationwide. In the West alone, in a region which encompasses Galway (City & County), Mayo and Roscommon there are 62 A.R.A.’s and the number is growing all the time. Ann Goodwin is our Development Officer and she is tireless in her efforts getting new A.R.A.’s established.

The Active Retirement Movement aims to help older people lead a full, happy and healthy retirement by offering organised opportunities for a wide range of activities —holidays, outings and socials; creative and learning programmes; indoor and outdoor sports; and community work.

Every two months we receive a Newsletter, from the Federation, which keeps us informed and up to date on relevant issues concerning older people. It includes items such as changes in legislation, entitlements, grants available, taxation, caring, health and safety, travel insurance etc.

Last October The Western Region organised an “ARA-GO-ON” Festival, which has now become an annual event. The week was given over to each A.R.A. organising events in their own area. The week began with a Festival lunch attended by over 350 members and was a resounding success.

This year the Athenry A.R.A. Bowling Club has been involved in several bowling competitions. We had our own Club competitions at Christmas, 1st June Favre, 2nd Mary Donoghue, 3rd Evelyn Grealish. We took part in the pairs competition organised by Loughrea A.R.A. and we are also involved in “The Billy Pope Cup” organised by Renmore A.R.A.

Some of our members are on their second computer course in the new l.T. Centre in the A.D.C. Office. We were part of the first course offered by the centre, with the result that we were privileged to meet the President Mrs. Mary McAleese and her husband when she came to officially open the centre last September. She was delighted to meet our oldest member Mary Donoghue and was very impressed with her computer skills and the fact that she could send and receive Email.

As part of the Bealtaine Festival, which is a festival that celebrates the creativity in older age, the Western Regional Council organised an Art Exhibition in May/June this year and some of our members had paintings displayed in Galway, Westport, Roscommon, BalIaghderreen and Foxford. A group of us are also taking part in an “Activity Fun Day” in Galway, which includes activities such as Line Dancing, Yoga and “Steppin’ and Strollin”.

As well as being members of our organisation many of us are involved in community work and support local charities. Last year we took part in the Women’s Mini Marathon in Dublin in support of Athenry Cancer Care. We enjoyed it so much that we are repeating the experience again this year. At Christmas we had an outing to Kinvarra, and at the moment we are in the process of organising our summer outing.

The Athenry Bowling Club meets twice a week, in the Community Hall in Clarke St, on Wednesday evenings at 7-30 pm and Friday mornings at 10-30 am. New members are always welcome. For more information ring O91-844497 Evelyn Hoare (Secretary).

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About this record

Written by Evelyn Hoare

Published here 14 Jan 2024 and originally published Summer 2005

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