Update on GCAIS Groups and Activities

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With the well-being of our Clients and Workers in mind, the following changes have been implemented affecting GCAIS Groups and Activities. These changes are based on:

  • Client concerns
  • Low participant  numbers
  • Minimal staffing numbers
  • Challenges regarding “social distancing”,

All groups and activities will cease from 18th March 2020 – 1st April 2020. Only shopping assistance and the operation of the Gymea Community Centre are exempt. Group leaders will be in contact in regards to next steps for each of the groups.
At this stage, we have NOT been instructed by the authorities to completely shutdown. Our reasons are based on what we have listed above. Further communications will be shared as advise and direction are provided to us.
We are conscious this situation will have an impact on those feeling isolated and vulnerable. As such, we have extended our assisted shopping service and doing all possible to keep our Centre open during it’s normal hours of Monday to Friday 9:30am to 4:00pm.

We ask that each visitor to the Centre take responsibility for their health and avoid entering the Centre if feeling unwell and experiencing symptoms related to the virus.

See information on our Assisted Shopping

For further information contact us on 02 95249559 or email Reception@gcais.ngo.org.au

Latest Notices on Group Cancellations

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Due to client concerns over the COVID-19 outbreak, the following group outings have been cancelled. Alternatively, we have increased our shopping assistance service to clients who are registered with MyAgedCare. Shopping assistance is a cost of $20 for 2 hours and we can assist you in doing your shopping with a carer and/or, give us your list and we’ll get it done for you!

Contact us on 95249559 or, Aged@gcais.ngo.org.au to book a time slot.

Cancelled social groups are:
– Monday Social Group: 23rd March 2020
– Multicultural Women’s Group: 17th March 2020
– Wednesday Social Group: 18th March 2020
– Tuesday Indian Social Group: 24th March 2020



Walking Groups

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Our walking groups are set up and awaiting your registration. In conjunction with Heart Foundation Walking, we have formed 5 groups to meet the needs of all ages and fitness levels. What’s even better, we have placed as much attention on the “after walk” social for those with the time to stay with the group just that little bit longer. Think cafes, smoothies, great conversation. Today it’s Gymea/Cronulla-tomorrow, Kokoda!!!

    To learn more, go to Heart Foundation Walking. By entering 2227 into the postcode field, the Gymea Easy Pacers; Gymea Afternoon Pacers, Gymea Summer Walkers, Gymea Nature Walk and Gymea Finally Friday will appear. Follow the prompts and enrol directly through the site. Or, download the registration form HERE.
    If you’d like to get more information from our walk coordinators, contact Rowena Condon, rowena.condon@gcais.ngo.org.au or Lou Mitchell, marie-lou.mitchell@gcais.ngo.org.au.
  • COST
    It’s Free to join the walk!!!! Additional costs to purchase the GCAIS walking t-shirt, water bottle and “after walk” activity.
    Our groups leave from a variety of locations. Go to What’s On for a full list of our groups
  • DAYS and TIMES
    The What’s On will list all details. In summary:
    – Tuesdays     9:30am from Zimzalas
    – Thursdays   4:00pm from the Gymea Community Centre or 6:00pm from Zimzalas
    – Fridays        9:00am from the Gymea Community Centre or 9:00am from the Sutherland Tennis Courts, 112 The Grande Parade Sutherland .
    So, if you’ve been thinking about getting active and joining a group that focuses on health, well-being and socialisation, contact us today. Email either Rowena or Lou, visit our Centre at 39 Gymea Bay Rd Gymea or call us 0295249559To find out more about Go to Heart Foundation Walking for full details of this initiative.

Watch Now: CommUNITY2019

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CommUNITY 2019:  Awareness:Advocacy:Action

Led and inspired by young people CommUNITY 2019 raises awareness of the challenges faced by migrants and refugees. Youth leaders bought together young people within the Sutherland Shire, Illawarra and St George communities, and through a program of interactive activities motivated them to act to reduce social exclusion, bullying, harassment and racism.


Australia’s Bush Fire Crisis

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We understand that many of our workers and clients have been affected by the recent bush fire crisis. Many of you are engaged in fighting the fires and participating in  community activities positioned to provide help and support to the victims. At the very least, many of us continue to feel the affects of the poor air quality which is expected to continue for some time.
We will continue to share any resources or information we receive. Alternatively, if there is any information you would like us to share through our network then send through to us.
Stay safe, look out for each other, and please reach out if we can help in any way.

GO HERE to find out how you can help

Holiday Opening and Closing Dates

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We are closed for the Christmas holidays from 24th December to 6th January. Due to renovations, the Centre remains closed until 13th January 2020.

From 6th January, we will be responding to voicemail and email messages. Please leave us a message on the following:

  • Phone: 02 9524 9559
  • Email Reception@gcais.ngo.org.au

Alternatively, look in our What’s On section for outings, groups and activities scheduled for 2020.

Holiday Dates for Walking Groups

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Some of our walking groups are taking a well-earned break over the Christmas period. below is a list of when they return in 2020. This information is also available in What’s On.

  • Gymea Easy Pacers  Tuesdays from 9:30am at Zimzala. No break taken
  • Gymea Afternoon Pacers  Thursdays from 4:00pm at GCAIS. Returning on 16th January 2020
  • Gymea Summer Walkers Thursdays from 6:00pm at Zimzala. Returning on 9th January 2020
  • Gymea Finally Friday  Fridays from 9:00am at GCAIS. Returning on 17th January 2020
  • Gymea Nature Walk  Fridays from 9:00am at Sutherland Tennis Courts. Returning on 3rd January 2020.

For more information, contact us at Reception@gcais.ngo.org.au or call on 02 9524 9559.


Seniors Exercise-Over 65+ Active and Social Program

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This program is now full. We will keep you up to date with future programs as they are scheduled

The active and social program offers anybody 65 years young and over an opportunity to stay active, maintain mobility and develop friendships in the new year.

This tailored program consists of health assessments from accredited physiologists at Peak Health, supervised gym sessions once a week, 5 nutrition sessions and additional activity sessions (e.g, aqua aerobics, dancing, singing, swimming, gardening, fishing, walking, Tai Chi, Zumba, lawn bowls etc)

This program has been designed to consider individual needs and requirements, and helps those with diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, arthritic pain or at risk of falls. 

WHEN:                 28th January – 26TH June 2020 (Includes weekly activities)
WHERE:               Gymea and various locations (dependent on activity)
COST:                    $80 (covers all assessments, gym and nutrition sessions and additional activities)    

Registrations close 21st January 2020 with limited spaces available. For further information and to register:

Telephone:         Jenny K. or Kalpna on 9524 9559
Email:                  jenny.k@gcais.ngo.org.au     kalpna.patel@gcais.ngo.org.au               

Additional information
This program is split into 2 terms of 9 weeks to coincide with the school academic terms:
Term 1 (January 27th– March 27th 2020) consists of:

  • Project launch on the 28th January 2020, where you will be introduced to all the partners on the project, get an overview of the program and hear from health professionals on the benefits of keeping active and social
  • Individual health assessments with Peak Health Physiologists
  • Introduction to online apps- to help you track your own progress.
  • Tailored gym sessions once a week for 8 weeks, under the supervision of Peak Health Physiologists to build strength and get active.
  • 5 nutrition sessions delivered by Sutherland Food Services
  • 4 Additional taster activities – you help us decide what you would like to do
  • Mid program assessment to check how you are tracking

Term 2 (27th April – 26th June 2020) consists of:

  • Tailored gym sessions once a week for 9 weeks, under the supervision of Peak health Physiologists to build strength and get active.
  • Additional nutrition sessions
  • Regular activity sessions
  • Final program assessment
  • Program graduation celebration.


Training, Food and English

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Read about how GCAIS partners with TAFENSW for a program aimed to provide employment and/or training opportunities, with a focus on developing English language skills at the same time as knowledge and skills in the vocational area of hospitality.


Over 60? Have we got a project for you!!

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Sutherland Shire Council is looking for 6 motivated people aged 60 years or over who are interested in joining a group of active, engaged and enthusiastic older people to provide valuable input for Council.

The role of the Seniors Reference Group is to provide a forum for engagement between older residents and to address and advance issues for older people within the Sutherland Shire.

For more information, contact Jayne Gan, jgan@ssc.nsw.gov.au  or 02 9710 0333. Expressions of Interest close on 20th December.

DOWNLOAD Reference Group Guidelines

DOWNLOAD Expression of Interest Form

GCAIS Success with Youth Opportunities Grant

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Gareth Ward Minister for Families, Community & Disability Services and Eleni Petinos MP for Miranda visited us and our young leaders after successfully applying for a grant “Changing the Narrative” so we can continue to offer great opportunities for them in future projects.

The grant aims to broadcast the voices of young Australians and to highlight through short films and a film festival, their concerns, interests and world views. The message being that a positive future is not only possible, but can be created by young people.
As the pics show, it was a fun and informative day for all.
Eleni Petinos MP @gareth.j.ward

New Walking Group: Gymea Nature Walk

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WE are now 5 walking groups, helping the Shire stay active and social. Our latest group, Gymea Nature Walk, commencing on 29th November from 9:00am will meet at Sutherland Tennis Courts, enjoying bushland whilst on downhill pathways, then stairs to the Woronora River. Strolling along the river’s edge to reserved seating at The Boatshed, a Creekside Café. Working off the coffee with an uphill incline along pathways & stairs back to the Tennis Courts. Approx 20 mins there, 20 mins coffee & then 20 mins back.

Registrations can be completed directly with Heart Foundation Walking, https://walking.heartfoundation.org.au/walking/#map or downloading the registration form. Alternatively, go to our What’s On page or, call us on 02 9524 9559 for more information.

Come and Visit the ShireWomen’s Marketplace Event

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Support our local businesses by visiting the ShireWomen’s Marketplace at Tradies on 15th November. Lots of prizes , giveaways, specials and bargains. Shop for Christmas here instead of battling the crowds. All are welcome and entry and parking are free.

WHEN: 15th November from 9:00am to 12:00pm
WHERE: Gymea Tradies, 57 Manchester Rd Gymea
COST: Entry and parking are free.

For more information go to Shire Women

Purchase a Gift Certificate for Christmas

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Stuck for what to give (or receive) for Christmas  or a special occasion?

Why not purchase a Gymea Community Aid (GCAIS) gift voucher and use for our many activities including day trips, group activities, even computer lessons? You can purchase up to $200 credit per voucher and utilise it as many times as you’d like.

In line with Fair Trading, vouchers have a 3 year expiry date giving you plenty of time to use it on your most valued activities. On request, GCAIS can hold the voucher on file at the Centre.


  • Vouchers must be produced upon redemption
  • Vouchers are not redeemable for cash
  • If purchases exceed the amount of the voucher, the balance must be paid by other available payment options
  • Vouchers must be redeemed within the validity period
  • Expired vouchers are not redeemable or refunded
  • GCAIS reserves the right to verify the identity of the bearer

For more information, contact our Front Desk on 02 95249559 or email Reception@gcais.ngo.org.au

Giving Tuesday-Support Our Causes 3rd December

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An Opportunity for Individuals and Businesses to give

GivingTuesday, taking place December 3rd, is a global day of giving that harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities and organisations to encourage giving and to celebrate generosity worldwide.  The goal is to create a massive wave of generosity that lasts well beyond that day, and touches every person on the planet.
Here at GCAIS, we have nominated 3 causes:

  1. Seating for the Community Garden
  2. Support funding to reduce isolation and promote independence and participation
  3. Purchase of equipment and materials for our Homework Club, Water Safety Session, English classes and Multicultural Groups

To support our causes, make a donation at our front desk or online  DONATE HERE. 

St George Migrant Information Day 6th November

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The St George Migrant Information Day includes information on:

  • Housing
  • Health
  • Employment
  • Education
  • Support Services
  • Government Services

The program will also include live cultural performances, stalls, free food and refreshments
WHERE: Marana Auditorium, 16 MacMahon St Hurstville
WHEN: 6th November between 10:00am to 1:00pm

For full details, download the flyer HERE