At the start of one of our sessions a member arrived clearly stressed.
The group is small and the members have developed a warm friendship. As the session began it was also clear that the member was still in a different paddock so the leader inquired if there was a problem. The member replied that it was to do with a large job she was having done and she was having problems with the contractor. The leader asked her if she wanted to talk about it and she replied that the group was gathered here to learn and not here to help with her personal problem.
There are some problems that are too personal to discuss outside your family and besides, nobody wants to intrude.
Many of our members live alone. Some of them are lonely, some of them cope well, others are learning to cope. They may or may not have family and children who are their support. Some have a close confidant or two.
There is a fine line between being a stickybeak and being supportive.
With all that in mind, the leader responded that the group was here not just to learn but to help one another. So the member then told them of her problem and in the process vented a little steam.
The problem was on-going but was slowly resolved and the group was kept in the loop. She has said she found the sharing of the problem with the group a release, therapeutic and helpful.
At the top of this page the three words LIVE, LAUGH and LEARN come from our U3A parent body. U3A Network is keen on 'branding' as this adds weight to the 28,000 Victorian U3A members, especially when negotiating with Government bodies.
The branding concept is the source of our new livery. We have added the extra two words FRIENDS and FELLOWSHIP to remind us that pastoral care is an equally important a part of our association.