Making friends the Starts at 60 way! 76



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Jan has struggled since turning 60. She decided to make a tree change and move inland, but has since lost contact with many of her friends.

Sadly, this happens to so many over 60s all over Australia. But, isolation and loneliness don’t need to be themes in your life. Starts at 60 is a community and we’re all searching to reach out and make new friends. So why don’t you?

When we heard about Jan’s troubles, we wanted to see how you, our loyal Starts at 60 community, meet new people to give Jan and so many others out there ideas on how to find new social networks and support groups.

We called out on our Facebook page and the response was wonderful. So, we’ve put together a list of the places where Starts at 60s are meeting new people, so hopefully more of you can do the same…


Retirement resorts

Retirement resorts and over 50s villages seem a popular place to start a new life and meet some wonderful people.

Joan said, “I moved into a lifestyle village in Golden Grove, SA, and in a very short time I have made some really fantastic new friends.”

Ann said, “ I made some beautiful friends when I moved into the early retirement village here in Mornington, I see them most days and two great friends also moved here.”

Jill said, “I moved to an over 50s resort eight months ago in a new area and have made some wonderful friends.”



If you have the extra time to spare, volunteering is a great way to meet new people. The best part is that if you’re generous in giving up your time for the less fortunate, the other volunteers will be just the same!

Denise said, “Made new friends when I started to volunteer at Vinnies. We meet each week when we work and go out for coffee about once a month or so.”

Julie said, “I have met some really lovely ladies who volunteer with me and I’m lucky to call them friends.”


Social gatherings

Sometimes we shy away from going to family or other social gatherings. But, as you can see here, they are a great place to meet new people. So next time, RSVP yes and be open to making new friends there.

Mary said, “In March 2012 I met my latest good friend. She was at a mutual friends’ birthday party. Such a wonderful gift!”

Ernie said, “Having coffee met this lady and we have become good friends she now lives in u s a but talk on Internet.”


Community clubs

Community clubs are great as they often run on a “anyone can join” basis. So you never know who you will meet.

Barbara said, “I go out with my friends fortnightly and have new girls join all the time fostering new friendships. We call ourselves the Red Hats.”

Carol said, “I joined the Hastings V.I.E.W. Club. It’s just a fantastic group. We go on a day trip every month and have a meeting/lunch one a month.”

Janice said, “I went to Probus group about six months ago… they have a meeting monthly.. .and lunch outings in between”

Peter said, “I joined my local Men’s Sheds and have met some great blokes through there.”



Starting a new hobby or simply finding a new club to continue an existing hobby is a great way to meet new people. You already have something in common so the conversation should just flow.

Arthur said, “I met a new friend at bingo and now we catch up every Friday.” 

Meryl said, “I have made new friends by joining a choir. However we don’t get together for coffee except after a show we have done.”

Janette said, “I’ve met a few ladies at our local Curves gym and we have coffee and a chat once a month.”

Gay said, “ I made a friend at my Scrapbooking monthly meeting a year ago. Going to have lunch with her Thursday!”


When you’re travelling whether it is overseas or throughout Australia, you are given so many chances to meet new people and make new friends. Be willing to listen to their experiences and share your own… You may even have some similar stories!

Margaret said, “I have just made new friends on our trip to Europe… Four new Aussie friends!” 

Dianne said, “We are camping and have just made two new friends.”


So tell us, what will you do this week that will give you a chance to make a new friend? Share your plans with us here and you might even meet another Starts at 60 member! 

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. If they do its their fault get out there and enjoy the simple things in life like fresh air exercise and wine

    2 REPLY
    • Why does there always have to be one unfeeling comment made on a real situation facing a lot of folk.
      Please just make positive suggestions or don’t comment
      I feel sorry Patricia Horne that at this time of the year you say this because not everyone makes friends easily.
      Happy Christmas to everyone in this page.

  2. Excatly how l,m feeling these day,s, l have the wine and that makes me very emonational, l work 2 1/2 day,s a week, walk the dog and still cannot shake this feeling of lonesome. l cry at the drop of a hat. .. l love music but cannot listen to it as it makes me very sad. l guess l,m in need of a happy pill. any suggestion,s?

    12 REPLY
    • I’m with you Roslyn, the tears flow here way to much. I volunteer 2 days a week. It’s family I miss and they have all past or live far away. Merry Christmas, I am going to lunch with a friends which is great but long for family Christmases.

    • Oh dear … I’m teaching my self to switch off… But deep breathing helps reduced anxiety.. I sleep with a fan blowing on me at night. Helps me breathe deeper when asleep.what you are experiencing is very generalised… Whole way of life change

    • Merry Christmas to you Sue and Rosyln, Christmas is a hard time of year for many, keep popping in here and talk to us if your feeling lonely, I am going out with family to lunch ( no cooking this year) but will be in this afternoon.. keep smiling xoxox

    • There may be someone living near you that feels the same , start smiling and speak to at least one new person every day even if it’s just a cheery “hot today isn’t it” that person may be feeling just like you and you will make there day brighter and next time they see you they will think here comes that lovely lady and speak to you. I did this and even though it felt strange at first it wasn’t long before I couldn’t walk down the street without bumping into my new friends . Hope this works for you. You are not alone. Merry Xmas.

    • I found that having an attitude of gratitude rely helps. I wake up and make a just if everything in my life I have to be thankful for, the result is truly amazing, it really lifts your sprit. Also a faith in a higher power. I choose God. Talking to him gives me peace and joy . Blessings

    • Also Teresa, have a talk with your GP. Sometimes you can have a temporary depression. It happened with my Mum twice. Tears for no reason and feeling unhappy and didn’t know why. Worth a try. I hope you can find some joy at Christmases. Maybe you could volunteer to help at a community lunch or something!

    • l,ve done the helping christine o,shea but find l,m not ready for this l do love to travel but that is an only short term solution. l love the piano also l,m thinking of taking up lessons even thou l,m at this age now, they say never to late to learn. l also have a family member and a friend who have joined a choir or singing group but l will have to look into this to see if they operate near me. thank you all for your kindness and thoughts may you all have a happy christmas and prosperous New Year.

  3. Moving into an over 55s village was the best thing I have ever done,joined senio citizens at the local bowlo,joined indoor bowls which is fun&made new friends.I drive seniors to appointments etc & we have lunch somewhere different each month.It is up to you to make the effort & accept that our families have their own lives to lead too,so keep busy,make new friends & try not to get too lonely

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  4. We have made some wonderful wonderful friends in our neighbourhood we talk on the phone and go to each other’s places have drinks have lunches have dinners have a great Melbourne Cup day a great Xmas dinner etc, we all bring the drinks and food so it is not left to one person, when anybody is sick we all chip into help each other, when somebody goes away we all look after their property, and we are all there for one and other, we are so lucky and it is appreciated by us all

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  5. Why is it assumed there are no such thing as spinsters anymore???? AND is it a crime??? I wasn’t going to have second best ( my opinion ) so doing life alone.

    1 REPLY
    • But are you lonely Julie? I’m married to a very quiet homebody. Years ago I realised if I stayed at home with him we would be divorced, so I’m out and about with friends – he doesn’t mind. I don’t think loneliness has anything to do with whether you are married or not.

  6. Facebook works a treat! Have made a couple of good friends from accidental friend requests 😉

  7. I also have joined U3A and next year I hope to have classes on writing my Autobiography

    1 REPLY
    • Good on you Lillian. I’m in a writers group at U3A. I also got together a group in U3A to teach drawing to last year and it has been great for both them and me.

  8. Would love to volunteer.

    1 REPLY
    • Well, do it, then. Heaps of charities and other organisations around who are pleading for more volunteers.
      Even if you have some sort of disability, something can often be arranged.

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