Thank goodness for Zoom!

Like many who have been forced online in order to stay connected during the COVID-19 lockdown, the journey to “seeing” friends and attending classes via Zoom was easier than I anticipated.

A couple of weeks after we ceased holding classes at U3A and began to understand that we were going to be socially isolated potentially for many months, I decided to find out just how to host a Zoom get-together.

Chair Zumba on Zoom

I had attended a couple of state-wide meetings via Zoom over the previous year but I just had to click a link to join and didn’t understand the technology at all. The experience wasn’t always consistent either, with participants having all kinds of difficulty with their devices and barking dogs and ringing telephones going off in the background!

Jump forward a few months and with the lockdown in full force I opened a free Zoom account and taught myself by practising on friends who had even less experience of the technology than I had.

Armed with this experience I was able to join the team of volunteers who have been involved in setting up and supporting our 45 Zoom classes. Leaders and individual members have been assisted to get online and as a participant in Paulina’s Chair Zumba class I can attest to the fun we all have each Thursday morning with an average of 60 attending each week.

I’m also able to host a weekly catch-up over a cuppa with my group of women friends who live all over Melbourne, none of whom had used the technology until the current pandemic and my Zoom ‘meeting invitation’.

Valerie and friends on Zoom

There are spaces in lots of our online classes so if you’d like to join a Zoom class, but don’t feel confident about using the technology, enrol in our holiday drop-in sessions ‘20AAOL49 Dip your toe into Zoom’ (enrol online) where you can practise in a supportive atmosphere or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we’ll see if we can help you get going online. Remember, you do need to have a computer, tablet or smartphone and be connected to the Internet.

Valerie Donlon
Vice President and Communications Convenor




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