The Art of Healthy Living at 95

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Upon first meeting Ms. Nguyen, it may be challenging to accurately guess her age. Despite appearing to be in her 70s, she is, in fact, 95 years old. Ms. Nguyen serves as a radiant illustration of a senior who embodies independence, happiness, positivity, and fulfillment during her golden years.

Ms. Nguyen comes from the southern region of Vietnam, where she grew up. Proficient in crafting Ao Dai (Vietnamese traditional dress), her tailoring business thrived due to her remarkable skills. A self-taught and fast learner, her craftsmanship was highly sought after. She married to her husband, who worked for the South Vietnamese Government at the age of 19, eventually becoming the mother of two daughters and a son. With her husband frequently on business trips, Ms. Nguyen cultivated an independent persona, juggling two jobs to support and raise her children.

However, good times did not last. Vietnam experienced war from 1955 to 1975, Ms. Nguyen's family was torn apart during the war. When the political regime changed, her husband was imprisoned for political reasons. Her two daughters fled to the United States and Australia. Ms. Nguyen continued to make a living with her sewing skills. In 1990, Ms. Nguyen's husband was released and then they moved to Perth that same year to be reunited with their daughters. After 42 years of a marriage marked by separation, Ms. Nguyen cherished the time she spent with her husband. Her husband passed away when she was 80 years old.

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Ms. Nguyen had experienced many hardships and endured all kinds of difficulties, but she faced life with an open mind. She came to understand that satisfaction is synonymous with happiness, enabling one to lead a fulfilling daily life.  Ms. Nguyen's secret to longevity is to keep working, doing regular exercises, staying positive, to be free of worries, and to be content. She worked until she was 87 years old before retiring. Ms. Nguyen shared that she dedicates at least three hours each day to gardening. Despite facing certain health challenges, such as diminished hearing and weakened hand strength, she continues to handle her daily activities mostly on her own. While cooking, she occasionally faces challenges like overcooking or burning food, but she perseveres. Cleaning and washing, though taking a bit longer, remain within her capabilities. Additionally, she allocates one day per week for volunteer work at pagodas. At the age of 95, she emphasizes her ability to sleep and eat well, use public transport, primarily buses, for independent travel. For Ms. Nguyen, maintaining independence and a positive mindset are crucial for a longer and healthier life.

With the help of a friend, Ms. Nguyen successfully applied for the government's My Aged Care program and chose to receive services from Chung Wah CC. At the Balcatta Hub, she not only met many new friends, but also reunited with old acquaintances. Ms. Nguyen shared that she likes Chung Wah CC most because she can meet friends and Chung Wah CC’s friendly staff who always care for her and cheer her up. She actively participates in the centre's activities, making her life more fulfilling and enjoying her golden era to the fullest.

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Chung Wah has been serving the Western Australian community since 1909, dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for individuals from diverse backgrounds. With close to 40 years of professional care experience, Chung Wah Community Care has a proven track record of helping seniors and people with disabilities improve their well-being and integrate more fully into the community. In 2023, we're promoting our theme, "Embrace, Elevate & Flourish," and striving to build a better community for all.

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