Retirement villages are often confused with aged care homes, and at time disparaged for being segregated from the wider community. The sector can learn from this story in News Corp’s QWeekend magazine about Rudi Bianchi, who is a resident at Blue Care’s Azure Blue Carina retirement village in a suburb of Brisbane.

Rudi moved into Azure Blue Carina in January after his wife had died, and he lived in a huge house close to Carina.

Retirement village operators rarely say that the residents leave the village, except in organised bus trips.

This is not the case with Rudi, now aged 85.

“I like to stay involved in things. I’m the president of the Far East Strategic Reserve Navy Association and vice president of the Queensland branch of the Naval Association of Australia.

“Many years ago we noticed there was no statue of a sailor in Queensland, so I led a committee that fought like mad to get one up at South Bank near The Ship Inn overlooking the Queensland Maritime Museum. It took four years but we finally wore bureaucracy down. Now every month we have an event there where I’m the master of ceremonies. We used a theory that old farmers used to use called the cattle dog theory, which is grab hold of something and never let it go.

“Every Monday night I go for a walk with the Hash House Harriers. There’s only one rule – no one’s allowed to be serious. I’m in my 42nd year of doing it. I was also a member of the Toowong Rowing Club for about 40 years. It was only last year that I stopped, but I still see all my rowing mates every Thursday morning for breakfast.

“I march every Anzac Day and a few of us get together on the river and drop petals in the water.”