The spread and magnitude of the impact of Covid-19 in Australia on mental health is yet to be fully realised and to address this pertinent issue, the Eastern Suburbs Older Persons’ Mental Health Service is hosting its 20th Positive Ageing forum as a free webinar.

According to the organisers, necessary physical distancing requirements over the past 18 months have meant many personal adjustments have needed to be adopted, with significant increases in feelings of social isolation and loneliness.

The forum will focus on the fundamental need for social connection – particularly in light of the global pandemic. It boasts a series of presentations from some of Australia’s pre-eminent academics and leaders in the field of connectedness, including social psychologist/researcher and acclaimed author Hugh Mackay, as guest speaker, and clinician and researcher Professor Henry Brodaty, who will present surprising findings about resilience to stress and recommendations on how to be more resilient.

“Covid-19 has been stressful for all, especially older people,” says Professor Brodaty, Co-Director of UNSW Sydney’s Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing and Honorary Medical Officer of the Older Persons’ Mental Health Service, Prince of Wales Hospital. “The implementation of strategies to cope with stress and feelings of isolation are paramount to maintaining good mental health during this time.”

Authority on social research and author of The Kindness Revolution, Hugh Mackay, will share his expert opinion on the challenges we have faced in the past two years and how that impacts our views on our lives and on society as a whole.

“Revolutions never start at the top. If we dare to dream of a more loving country – kinder, more compassionate, more cooperative, more respectful, more inclusive and less cynical – there’s only one way to start turning that dream into a reality: each of us must live as if this is already that country,” says Mr Mackay.


Keeping Connected: Social health and ageing

 DATE: Wednesday 27 October, 2021.

 TIME: 10am – 12pm AEDT

 LOCATION: Virtual – Follow the link to register:



Dr Stephanie Ward, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing (CHeBA) and staff specialist in geriatric medicine at The Prince of Wales Hospital.

Dr Suraj Samtani, Clinical Psychologist and Postdoctoral Fellow leads a CHeBA project designed to uncover the links between social and brain factors connected to cognitive decline, will focus his talk on social connectedness for maintaining mental health.