Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria and Regis Aged Care have formed a major partnership to promote the importance of nature for the wellbeing of senior Australians. The partnership will include nature focused activities for Regis residents both on-site at Regis facilities and at Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria’s two gardens in Melbourne and Cranbourne. In addition the partnership will develop a new Seniors Engagement Program open to all older Australians. Designed specifically for the older community, this program will provide unique experiences encompassing health, wellbeing and nature tailored to meet the needs of an older demographic.

The partnership was developed with consideration for Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria’s and Regis Aged Care’s desire to enhance health and wellbeing of seniors through immersion in nature.

“Regis’ significant investment has allowed Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria to develop unique and much needed experiences for the aged community of Melbourne,” says Tim Entwisle, Director & Chief Executive Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. “This segment represents a significant proportion of visitors to the Gardens and we are so thrilled to be able to develop programmes which offer rich, outdoor experiences at any age.”

As part of Regis’ 12 month investment, its residents will partake in the programs first and receive creative and engaging incursion and excursion experiences that connect the power of nature to health and wellbeing.

The Incursion Experiences will be designed by Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria’s Programming and Learning experts with the abilities of aged care residents in mind. They will initially be delivered at 16 of Regis’ 18 facilities across Melbourne.

The Excursion Experiences will be designed for home care, retirement village clients and aged care residents and will be delivered on site across Cranbourne and Melbourne Gardens. Adjustable to all levels of mobility, this program will encompass health, wellbeing, sensory workshops, indigenous activity and garden experiences.

The publicly accessible Seniors Engagement Program will mainly target older Australian clubs, so they can easily engage with Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. It will be measured for community and societal benefit before being rolled out for the enjoyment of the general public from April 2019.