The Young Guns lunches are a meaningful way to create community and build relationships between our participants. OnTrack Tasmania provides one of the key components of building support networks around the individual, which includes friends, family, and other people in the community. The Young Guns lunches provides opportunity for people to connect with each other, build relationships, and have fun doing everyday activities.
Each week, participants living in our Supported Independent Living (SIL) accommodation, and who participate in the OnTrack Tasmania Community Access (CA) program choose which restaurant or pub they want to sit, relax, and get a bite to eat. On one recent occasion the members of Young Guns organised to meet at the Shamrock Hotel in Hobart. A booking was made and transport was organised by our team to make sure everyone can come to the event.
After a rainy start to the day, the skies began to clear just in time for lunch. The lunch was filled with conversation and plenty of laughter, as everyone got to catch up with old friends and made new ones. Keith, one of our members arrived early and was playing chess on his phone. As people arrived, there was curiosity from people wondering on what his next move would be. When everyone arrived, an OnTrack staff member took on the role of waiter, taking everyone’s orders as they chose from the menu.
Ruby was laughing away with her support worker Kia about weekend plans and discussing going to see the regatta. Kia has been Ruby’s support worker since she started at OnTrack Tasmania two years ago. They both come to the Young Gun’s lunch regularly. Ruby began asking everyone “What gen (generation) are you?”. Many answers came out across the table from millennial to Generation X, Y and Z. It was discovered most people were of the younger generations.
As food was coming out to the table, Gerard was chatting away about how he would spend his birthday. “I can’t decide if I’ll have either a barbeque or a party.” Ruby was checking the weather for the date on her phone to find it would be a very hot 30 degrees Celsius. Gerard would need more time to decide what type of event he would like to host.
OnTrack Tasmania Office Staff took advantage of the opportunity to catch up with our participants and support workers. Everyone expressed how they are and what has been happening in their lives. For many support workers this is a great opportunity to spend time with others in a similar role where they are networking and building up connections.
After everyone had finished their food, it was time to leave. Everyone started to say their goodbyes, got up from their chairs and left the Shamrock Hotel. Some members went home with their support workers, while others went their separate ways.