What's in a name?: Bid to breathe new life into centre

NAME NEEDED: Orange Senior Citizens and Pensioners Centre art class co-ordinators Jan Savage and Wanda Driscoll (back) with students Antonia Covelli and Linda Larsen. Photo: DANIELLE CETINSKI 0617dcpensioners1

NAME NEEDED: Orange Senior Citizens and Pensioners Centre art class co-ordinators Jan Savage and Wanda Driscoll (back) with students Antonia Covelli and Linda Larsen. Photo: DANIELLE CETINSKI 0617dcpensioners1

A SEARCH for a fresh name for the Orange Senior Citizens and Pensioners Centre has received early support in a bid to increase the facility’s patronage.

Jan Savage, who has organised art classes at the centre for the past four years, said she had raised the idea previously.

“I felt it was restricting the usage,” she said.

“There’s a lot of activities for the 50-plus, but the 50-plus don’t want to be associated with senior citizens or pensioners or superannuants.

“We need a more uplifting and positive approach to retired people who want to make use of a community facility.”

One of the class’s art students, Suzanne Rosser, certainly did not see herself as a pensioner.

“I’m young,” she said with a laugh.

“Just because we’re tired doesn’t mean we’re on the scrapheap.”

Fellow student Antonia Covelli said the word ‘community’ should be included because of the role the centre played in users’ lives.

“If this wasn’t here, we wouldn’t be coming here and learning together. We have become very good friends,” she said.

Mrs Savage said changing the centre’s name was a much-needed first step in reaching its potential.

She also believed its front facade needed work to make the centre more welcoming.

The idea was floated in Orange City Council’s Ageing Community Committee.

Services Committee chair Ron Gander said the centre was successful, but it was worth investigating whether any obstacles prevented it from working better.

“The option of naming the centre after a person or some other symbolic name might be all it takes to help open the doors to more people,” he said.

Cr Gander said it was early days and community consultation would be undertaken.

Mrs Savage said the idea of nominating a namesake was brilliant and former federal MP Peter Andren could be an option in recognition of his work with the Cancer Care Western NSW Radiotherapy Alliance.

danielle.cetinski@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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