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Leisure & creative therapies

Resources to beat isolation

Explore new ways to stay in touch with friends and family during the COVID-19 pandemic. As well as a list of activities you can do at home to stay active and engaged during isolation.

Video calls

Video-calling is a great way to stay in touch with friends and family. Here are some things you can try:

  • A dinner party - You can plan it, create a menu, get dressed for the occasion and have friends and family participate from their own homes. If you used to go out for dinner with friends, why not give this a go?
  • Coffee, tea and lunch catch-ups - If you used to catch up with friends during the day for a coffee or tea, then keep doing this via video-calling. 
  • Go through photo albums with family and friends. 
  • Fun with the little ones - if you are a grandparent, uncle, aunt, adopted elder then stay connected with the kids by reading them a story. 
  • If you're musical - organise to play music, a musical instrument, form an online choir, or sing and dance with friends. 
  • Try new recipes together - cook at the same time and have a laugh while doing it! 
  • Start a weekly club with your friends and family - schedule a weekly time with friends and family time to discuss a good book, recipe or movie.  
  • Eight free mobile games to stay connected with family & friends - The World Health Organisation recommends gaming as a safe way to stay connected to friends and family, but you don't need to buy a console to get involved. 

Connecting with new people

Meetup is a free platform (like facebook) for groups of people who're interested in a particular topic to catch-up online. You can sign up for a free account and then you can search under and connect to special interest groups (active, social, art, professional etc). Here is a list of Melbourne based ones that are now meeting online:


Online games

There are all sorts of games that can be played online with other people:

Virtual experiences

There are a number of already existing websites and platforms that have set up virtual tours of museums, nature walks, dives, amusement park rides and more. You don’t need virtual reality equipment for these, you can view them on your phone, tablet, computer or smart TV. 

Live arts and music

Many theatre, opera and symphony companies are streaming concerts and making their art available to view for free:

Museums galleries libraries

As museums, galleries and libraries have closed to the public they are making collections available through virtual tours:

Moving in fun and interactive ways

It’s time to get creative with keeping physically active! Other ways to keep active that aren’t “workout” based are gardening, dancing to your favourite songs, even just taking a short walk or roll.

Mental health resilience and spirituality

There are a number of platforms that help build good resilience and mental health through activities especially designed for a specific concerns like reducing stress or anxiety, building gratitude, meditation, better sleep.


Learning a new skill will grow the mind, absorb you in a new pursuit and take your mind away for whille:

Gardening and nature

If you’re looking for a garden and nature fix then check out some of these links that Steven Wells our Horticultural Therapist has put together for you: 

Gardening shows

  • Gardening Australia - Gardening Australia shares knowledge from across Australia with their presenters presenting gardening stories for all Australian climates and locations. There is even a recent story about our Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Centre gardens  'A garden for healing'. 
  • The Garden Gurus - The Garden Gurus TV Show shares knowledge from across Australia with presenters sharing their knowledge through videos, factsheets and The Garden Gurus TV Show. 

Time lapse videos

You may also find these time lapse videos facinating.

Garden tours

Music therapy (with a difference)

Our Royal Talbot music therapists have put together an amazing guide to how to boost your home engagement with music and thus explore music more.

Listening to music

Music can have a therapeutic effect on your mood, and now might be a good time to explore ways of using music as a tool to lift and transport you somewhere else.


Under Search, there's an option to Browse All categories and genres that might interest you. In the folder called Mood there are many different options to help match your mood such as:

  • Morning Motivation
  • Unwind 80s
  • Chilled Afternoon
  • Rage Beats
  • Soul Coffee

YouTube Music

On the Home page, scroll down to find playlists to suit your mood:

  • Feeling Good
  • Energy Boost
  • Easy Afternoon
  • Stay Focused

Apple Music

Under the Browse topion, there is a heading called Music by Mood.

Astronomy and interstellar exploration

If astronomy and space is your thing or if you are new to it you will love The Role of Data Science in Astronomy and Interstellar Exploration.

The article is packed with great information and links to telescopes like the Hubble Space Telescope and interstellar explorers such as Voyager (and lots more). Follow these links to view photos and videos of what is out there in space.

[Thanks to Sarah Walker and her student Jeremy for suggesting this link.]

Send us your suggestions

Leisure & Creative Therapies

Phone: 03 9490 7539

Email: Talbot.Leisure@austin.org.au


Royal Talbot Rehabilitation Centre
1 Yarra Boulevard
Kew, Victoria 

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