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Families send ‘Virtual Hugs’ to loved ones in aged care

24th March 2020

Not-for-profit aged care and community health provider, Benetas, has invited families and carers with loved ones in its residential aged care facilities to share messages of hope and love during this challenging time.

Following social distancing requirements, as part of a range of proactive efforts to support the health and wellbeing of those in residential aged care, Benetas’ online ‘Virtual Hug’ tool reminds everyone in the community that while physical distancing is critical, so are meaningful relationships and emotional connections.

The tool provides an online solution to allow families to send written messages and photos to loved ones. CEO Sandra Hills OAM said that Benetas was seeing people across Victoria make generous acts to share their care and love for their elderly loved ones despite the physical limitations that are now in place.

“As a provider of aged care and community health, we want to remind the community that while they mightn’t be able to physically see or visit their loved ones during this period, relationships and love will never be postponed or cancelled.”

Since launching the tool on Friday last week, dozens of family members have sent through beautiful messages of care and compassion, including photos of a new great-grandchild to one of our residents.

“They reflect the incredible care and love we all have for our elderly family members. We are happy to provide a new and innovative way for families to express this during a difficult time.’

Ms Hills said that sharing messages of love and compassion are more than feel-good warm and fuzzies.

“It’s imperative that we’re sharing messages of care, and that we’re actively encouraged to look out for one another if we’re going to build a community that’s supporting those who are going to be most vulnerable.

“Benetas works with over 8000 older Victorians providing essential aged care and health care services. As such it’s imperative that we do all that we can to protect their health and safety, and that also means promoting kindness during this time.”

As part of this, Benetas has also launched a positive news and stories hub to share kind acts in its network and across Australia to inspire and conjure this goodwill.

“While it’s testing times, it’s reassuring to be reminded of the goodwill that we’re seeing unfold. Let’s not lose sight of this and remember that kindness is at the core of who we are and who we need to be right now.”



The global impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19) have us all feeling uncertain, so there is no better time to #SpreadKindness. Let's share uplifting moments of support for our older loved ones and each other. Kindness spreads quickly, no matter how small the act.

View #SpreadKindness Hub

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