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Health in focus for Loving Hands

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A room full of older woman got to work at the Merrick Golf Clubhouse, silently crocheting and knitting shawls, blankets and other goods — all of which they donate to charities across Long Island.

The group was Loving Hands: Knit and Crochet for Charity, and the occasion was Women’s Wellness Day, on Jan. 13. Members gathered to celebrate their accomplishments, outlined their goals and hear from speakers about improving their health.

“Here, you will enjoy fashion, friendship and fun, while doing charity work,” said President Lillianne Sabia, in a speech kicking off the event.

Next was Lorinda Bauer, a representative of NuHealth and Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow, who provided blood pressure tests and spoke to the crowd about heart health.

Caitlyn Inciarrano, a representative of the Nassau County Office of the Aging, discussed with the group what resources the office has available for older adults.

After each presentation, Sabia invited speakers to “stop at our little boutique” and pick out a piece of clothing or blanket crafted by a member.

“Hopefully the artisan is here,” she said, after Inciarrano drew a scarf from the assortment of goods.

The keynote speaker was Rosa Yordan, an East Meadow author, motivational speaker and life coach.

Yordan, 66, taught special and general education for 36 years at junior high schools in the New York City school system before retiring in June 2013 and starting to pursue other goals. She published a book in 2015 titled, “Re-imagine Your Life: Seven Secrets to Achieve Your Dreams,” which is part self-help and part memoir.

To begin her presentation, Yordan handed out sheet of papers with positive life goals, some of which included networking with others, exercising regularly and thinking positively. Then, she asked the room which ones they were currently doing and which they could be doing more.

Yordan stressed the importance of enjoying retirement, explaining what she focused on doing after her tenure as a teacher. “What could we continue to do or begin to do,” she asked. A woman responded by saying “Play mahjong,” which made the room fill with laughter.  

Yordan laughed too and encouraged everyone to pursue new passions, despite their age or physical limitations. Then, she asked the room permission to start one of her goals for 2020 before revealing a rope-like object from her belongings. The crowd began to clap as she interrupted her speech for a demonstration and began jumping rope.