When COA was conceived, the directors were only concerned with providing a kosher meals-on-wheels service to the frail aged of Sydney. What they did not intend to do was start a social Center, that happened as a response to the requests of COA Volunteers.

When meal delivery volunteers returned to COA after their deliveries to hand in cash and cheques they had  collected and make informal reports on health or self care problems emerging with clients, they also asked for somewhere to get together after their meal runs to have a cup of coffee and talk to each other.

So in the early 80’s, COA began offering social connection on Monday and Wednesday (but not on Friday as
 people raced to get home and prepare for Shabbat) for meal volunteers in the Folk Centre Hall, our home at that time. Of course when you get a group of volunteers together they never stop helping; therefore, soon after Centre activities began, the volunteers started making a simple sandwich lunch, (which has since evolved into our current Centre based meal program offering both cold and hot lunches), others played on piano, some offered informal current affairs groups. Soon speakers were engaged to come and talk to the ever growing crowd about self help, ways to keep young in mind and  spirit, financial advise for those on a limited income, and other topics to engage members in retirement. Realising that people wanted more than just self help or lectures, musicians were engaged to entertain the group, with some of Sydney’s best and most respected musicians starting out on the COA Centre stage, such as Daniel Weltlinger, and Monsieur Camembert.

Within a few months the word had gotten around the community that something special was happening at COA. There were at that time no existing centers for Jewish seniors that kept a kosher kitchen, and celebrated Jewish festivals, so COA was presenting something unique in Sydney’s landscape and the crowd swelled in response as more and more seniors wanted to experience what COA had on offer.

Soon the Folk Centre was packed to the rafters every Monday and Wednesday, and as more and more people wanted to attend the COA’s Drop-in Centre our COA Transport service was created to cope with the surge, and ensure those with limited mobility could still attend our Centre. It means that when one wakes up in the morning, sees the sun shining and thinks—I want to get out today—they can, because as a Drop-in Centre no advance booking is needed to attend.

After 20 years, our Monday and Wednesday gatherings had become a tradition. So when we moved into our own home in the COA Krygier Centre in 2003 the program came with us into our purpose built hall. In 2021 it was finally decided to give the group of activities offered on Monday and Wednesday the name Club COA, a place for all Jewish people of all nationalities and backgrounds to meet and socialise with one another.

Many of our members have found new friends, new interests, and even discovered new love, through Club COA - a friendly and relaxed place for Jewish seniors to connect with each other and their culture.