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Jennifer Tosolini wins Outstanding Achiever award
Tuesday 11 December 2012
Long-time Society member Jennifer Tosolini recently won the COTA SA Every Generation Outstanding Achiever Award for 2012 based on her volunteer work with people who have Alzheimer's Disease and dementia for whom she carries out Cognitive Stimulation and Validation Group Therapy sessions at the residential aged-care facility ACH Milpara.
In addition to her therapy sessions, Jennifer also gives presentations to staff at ACH Milpara about her work and does counselling with residents who may be having problems settling into the residential environment.
Jennifer has a B.A. in Sociology and a Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling Studies. She has one more unit to do before receiving a Post Graduate Certificate in Philosophical Studies. These studies have been carried out whilst managing ME/CFS.
Jennifer says "It hasn't been easy, but I did it. I am still recovering from the COTA awards ceremony at the Intercontinental Hotel which was held on October 30, but I can remember the years when the ME/CFS was so severe that I couldn't have contemplated attending such a function."
Jennifer's achievements were also featured in the Adelaide Advertiser:
At 75, Jennifer Tosolini isn't too old for studying
AT an age when most of her friends were slowing down and retiring, Jennifer Tosolini decided to enrol in university for the first time.
She started her Bachelor of Arts in 2001, aged 63, and now, at 75, she will wrap up her study next semester by finishing the final subject of a postgraduate Certificate in Philosophical Studies.
While age has proved no barrier to Ms Tosolini's desire to study, the crippling chronic fatigue syndrome she's battled most of her life has made her road to achieving a degree harder than most.
"It's definitely never too old to start study. I think it's fascinating how you can discover parts of yourself you never knew existed," she said.
"I decided to study when I was limited physically by what I could do and having chronic fatigue, and trying to study has been a challenge at times, but I've thrived on it."
At UniSA, where Ms Tosolini completed a Graduate Diploma in Social Sciences (Counselling Studies) in 2009, there are 155 students aged 60 years and over, enrolled.
Ms Tosolini now dedicates much of her time to helping residents with Alzheimer's disease at ACH's Rostrevor Milpara aged care home.
She helps them complete simple and fun activities to regain self-confidence and maintain positive relationships with their families.
In October, she was awarded a Council of The Ageing Outstanding Achiever award for her work with elderly.
The Advertiser article originally appeared here.
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