To help celebrate this year’s Seniors Week (15-23 August) and our amazing senior clients, a Seniors Short Story Book was launched!

A wonderful initiative of our Active Living Program for Seniors in Queensland, the Senior Stories book was published in August 2020. This features the incredible short stories and poems from all the authors that entered into our Senior Short Story Competition earlier this year. These are brilliant heart-warming stories of yesteryear. Stories of love and loss, time and change, war and sickness, hardship but also the good times.

A hardcopy of the Senior Stories book was personally sent to all the authors that contributed to this amazing collection of stories. Copies were also sent to our Queensland sites for our clients to hopefully offer some light entertainment during social isolation.

One of our lovely authors, Alla Craigie, happened to stumble across an unlikely connection with one of the other authors!

“Congratulations to Able Australia for asking Seniors for their Stories. Looking at the wonderful stories that have been published has proven that there are so many people that have lived through some sad as well as extraordinary lives. I would like to thank Jessy personally and for taking the time to deliver the book to me. It was lovely to meet Jessy. Little did I know that my story would connect with someone who 70 years ago was in various refugee camps in Europe (as my family) to be on the same ship leaving Naples in Italy, to arrive in Australia and be placed in the same Refugee camp in Bonegilla – on the border of Albury/Wodonga. The chances of that happening, as our daughter said “wow” what are the odds. Never a truer word was spoken. What makes it so surreal is that we should both decide to write our story and if it were not for Senior Stories this may not have happened. So, thank you Able Australia for giving our Seniors a voice to write about their lives as they were growing up, and the many changes that they have seen and many more that are still evolving. The COVID19 for one. Thank you once again for giving me the opportunity to write my story. Also to all the other participants who took part in sharing their stories.” – Alla Craigie

We are so glad that this book has brought people together in a time of social isolation.

A comment from our Community Project Manager Jessy Byrnes;

“I never could have anticipated the immense joy this would bring to the lives of so many. This project was inspired by my late grandfather. After his passing, hidden away under his bed, my family found handwritten diaries containing his life stories. So many untold stories hidden away, such treasures to be told. Every senior has a unique story and we at Able Australia empowered seniors to share their stories with the special opportunity for them to be captured in a published book. I have found the writers found the gift of being heard and of allowing people to remember who they are and what they done, the sharing of traditional values and culture, the recognition from their loved ones and the community, and the reflection on their past and how life has changed to be the most rewarding part of being involved in this project”.

To read the Seniors Short Story Book, please click here to view it as a PDF: Senior Short Stories Book PDF 2020

If you have any questions, please contact Jessy Brynes on 07 5600 0733 or

Below is a photo of Alla Craigie.