2020 – WHAT HAVE WE LEARNED?

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By Jennifer Cook

Well it turns out that our mental health is 90% of the game. No surprise to most of us I suspect, but we have all learnt in how incredibly important actual people contact and socialisation is to all of us – and how, when you are only allowed to go 5km from your front door, the neighbourhood you live in becomes critical.

So we are incredibly grateful to live in the Maribyrnong community and specifically West Footscray, where we have such a diverse and rich group of folk. My street is a great point in case. We have writers, musicians, teachers, bankers, engineers, Mums, Dads, Grandparents, teenagers, toddlers, babies and elderly folk at home on their own.

The act of walking the dog up and down the street has been enough to bump into everyone at some point and say hello, check in and get the social contact we all craved. We are even happier now to see those same people (with masks off!) and the connection we feel to them, to community and the benefit to our health is blindingly clear.

So if this year taught us anything, it is that neighbours do indeed make great friends.

Western Health Collectives favourite “tipples”

Summer Season is on us and we are once again going to be social and celebrate our freedom and hard-fought victory here at WHC. So we asked all our fabulous crew what their favourite tipple was and the answers gave us all some new drinks to try! It also told us that we are a crew who loves their Gin!!

  • Gin & Tonic with Australian finger limes
  • German Pilsner Beer
  • Fireball & Dry with lime and lots of ice
  • Dry Gin Martini
  • French Champas (thanks Patsy)
  • Mimosa
  • Gin & Tonic
  • Lime, Gin, (Bombay Sapphire), Tonic, (Indian), Quinine (LGBTIQ)
  • Bloody Mary Extra Spicy!
  • Sangria.
  • Gin & Tonic with “23rd St” Gin.
  • Bramble Cocktail – gin, lemon juice, sugar syrup, crème de mûre (blackberry liqueur)
  • Mojito
  • Pisco Sour
  • Japanese Gin and Tonic with Ginger

We hope this gives some inspiration and know that we are charging our glasses to all in the community who supported us over this last year and we promise to keep supporting you through 2021. Take care everyone and thank you so very much.


Jennifer Cook is Director of the Western Health Collective.

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