Published: 07 Sep 2017

First train ride since the ‘red rattlers’

For a lot of us, the daily commute on the tram or train is a necessity that we’d rather not have to do.

But for a group of lovely ladies from one of Uniting’s social support groups, a recent ride on the Glen Waverley line to the CBD opened up new opportunities for independence and social connections, with many not having ridden a train in years.

“We hadn’t been on a train since the old red rattlers!” said Peggy, 91.

“How comfortable and modern the ride was. It was computerised and easy to travel!”

This special outing was organised to show the ladies how much public transport has changed in recent years. It’s all part of helping our clients feel more confident and able to be more independent by using public transport again.

The group’s destination was Melbourne Central shopping precinct, a new destination for most. They loved the business, beautiful clothes and plentiful café options to stop for a lovely lunch.

Client Heather said it was a great opportunity to visit Melbourne by train with her friends, without having to rely on her family.

“The excursion was an unforgettable experience and I would like to travel more by train,” Heather said.

Uniting St Mark’s Team Leader Ethan Gankanda said the outing was a big hit.

“Mostly we travel by bus to our various destinations around Melbourne, including the city, outer suburbs and country areas – however we will be starting to use public transport more often! It’s all about helping to boost our clients’ confidence to get out and about themselves independently and enjoy more social connections,” he said.

Wesley Mission Victoria is now known as Uniting. Read more about our journey with 23 other Uniting Church and community service agencies to become a single organisation.