Making the most of retirement.


February 13, 2024

Margaret and Jackie will be the first to tell you that retirement is busy and fulfilling. Residents at Gardiner Lodge in Glen Iris, they are part of a closeknit and bustling community.

Ive always liked theatre, movies, reading, meeting people my life hasnt really changed! I really make the most of retirement. says Margaret. Having lived at the village for 7 years, she felt at home as soon as she moved in. She says the residents care about each other, and check in regularly, while being aware that each resident is busy pursuing their own hobbies and interests.

Jackie now in her 80s was working up until a few years ago. Doing all the things, being with people. Im still able to make a difference, she says.

Having worked as a CEO for a wellknown notforprofit organisation, community building is in her blood, and she hasnt stopped her deep commitment to making others lives better.

Gardiner Lodge is one of 12 villages owned and managed by Uniting. With a focus on independence and flexibility, Uniting retirement villages are designed to encourage residents to continue to live life on their own terms.

Jackie likes that everyone in the Gardiner Lodge community has a say, and can be involved. She believes the strength of the community is its collaboration its a shared belief that society is better if we do it together, she says.

Both women also appreciate that they share the values of the people in the neighbourhood. Its a friendly, welcoming community that celebrates marriage equality, and diversity. It creates cohesion amongst the residents, and allows a dynamic and progressive environment.

Jackie says, We believe its better for two people to connect, no matter what their gender thats much better than two people being isolated and lonely”.

For Margaret, staying in the area of Melbourne she has always called home is important. After she moved from her family home in Camberwell into a small flat, she felt upheaved. But since moving to Gardiner Lodge she has appreciated that the gardens and maintenance are taken care of, and likes knowing that the people in her community care about each other. And she hasnt had to change her life dramatically.

Ive been in the same book club for over 50 years, she says, there are 8 of us from the original group. Weve grown up together, raised families. And we still meet every month and actually talk about the book! she laughs.

Asked what makes the village so special, Margaret says Kindness. Being aware of peoples needs. Thats all it takes”.

Learn more about Uniting’s independent living retirement villages.

Learn more about Gardiner Lodge, Glen Iris.

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