ABOVE: Trevor has been playing this bass for five years PHOTO BY GRANT J EVERETT
By Trevor from New Outlook
If you ask me how I am today, I’d say I’m very good. It’s probably the best day of my life!
I really value being able to express myself creatively with my music, and two years ago I finally bit the bullet and started composing. Now I have almost two hundred followers on Facebook! It gives me a buzz to know that there are people out there who like my music. Some of my followers are personal friends, but many of them are from all around the world and I haven’t actually met any of them. I probably wouldn’t have been able to start composing and sharing my songs without the confidence I have gained with New Outlook’s help.
I’ve been attending New Outlook the whole time it’s been at Wollongong. I’ve become friends with a lot of the members over the years, though many of them have moved on to bigger and better things. It’s always bittersweet to see them go. These friendships, the chance to socialise and the familiarity, are what keep me here.
Something I love about this place is that I really feel like I’m a part of things. New Outlook values member input – the staff always listen to our suggestions and requests – and they do all they can to accommodate our ideas. If they know you have an interest in something, they’ll go out of their way to help you get involved with it. They’re always very open to new ideas. For instance, I asked them if they could promote the benefits of veganism, and this led to the Veganuary event they ran in January.
“I probably wouldn’t have been able to start composing and sharing my songs without the confidence I have gained with New Outlook’s support.”
I also suggested a music appreciation group, and that quickly led to the formation of The New Outlook Band (they’re still working on finding the perfect permanent name). I know for a fact that at least one of the musicians of New Outlook comes here specifically to play in the band.
Something I really enjoy is the cultural celebration days we hold on the last Wednesday of each month, as this allows us to explore other cultures and try the kinds of food that they eat. The first one of these celebration days focused on Spanish culture, and I love everything Spanish! We had a Latino guitarist turn up as a guest, and he was amazing. He was actually a friend of one of the band members, and he was kind enough to accept an invitation to attend New Outlook on the day for free. It’s really great that we have visits from celebrities like that.
Having goals has really helped me and New Outlook as supported me in those goals. I’ve achieved many things that I’ve set out to do, like losing weight. New Outlook made this easier with their physical exercise groups. Even though these classes weren’t all that strenuous (mostly stretching and gentle stuff like that), they still had an impact. Another major goal was to build on my confidence, and that’s going really well. I don’t think I would have been able to get any more confident without New Outlook’s support.
Another goal I have is to start swimming in the ocean (between the flags, of course). I haven’t really been in the sea in 25 years because of a bad experience I had where I almost drowned, but I actually achieved a part of this goal just yesterday: I went to the beach and walked in the water. And not just the shallow bit on the beach, but deep enough for the water to come up to my knees. Until then, the closest I got to the salt water was the safety of the rock pools. Actually, I might ask if New Outlook can take the members to the beach. It isn’t far, and if we do it as a group we can support each other…
Personally, even though I’ve been a long-term member of New Outlook and I love a lot that’s on offer, the main thing keeping me here is the music, especially the weekly band practice. The New Outlook Band always plays at the cultural celebration days, so we have to prepare for that. Like many things in life, I don’t compose and play just to get paid: I do it for the love.
Flourish Australia’s New Outlook
3 Station Street WOLLONGONG NSW 2500
1300 779 270