Life at 90 still packed full of vitality, activities

Rona Panos (90) with Amana Living occupational therapy assistant Jan Fairclough.
Rona Panos (90) with Amana Living occupational therapy assistant Jan Fairclough.

‘Rona is ‘hyperactive’, always on the go,” Retirement Living co-ordinator Rowena McEvoy said.

‘She was still going dancing until she had knee surgery recently but no doubt she will be back at it as soon as she recovers.”

Rona, who turns 91 in June, volunteers at Wearne House, the neighbouring aged care facility where she works alongside staff to enhance the wellbeing of residents aged from their mid-70s to mid-90s.

She keeps the residents active by gathering them together for sessions on the exercise bike, preparing them for the Aged Care Games and helping with social activities such as outings and the Sunshine Club, which gets residents singing and playing games.

‘Rona also does shopping for some of the residents,’ Rowena said. ‘She doesn’t drive so she will walk to the local shops for them.’

A dancer since the age of 14, Rona recently gave her tap shoes away but she still takes part regularly in ballroom dancing and line dancing.

As if these activities were not enough, she has been a member of the Blind Bowling Club Mandurah for 24 years, where she teaches the blind to bowl and has accompanied them to a number of competitions in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

Her tips for staying happy, healthy and youthful: eat healthy and stay active, always keep in touch with old friends and always stay positive.