Gaudium, a Penrith based Care services provider for seniors and Kiddlywinks Day Nursery also based in Penrith, have joined forces to create an exciting new project to bridge the gap between the two different generations. The project began on the 12th December 2019 and hopes to run into the future, expanding inter-generational links in Cumbria.
We saw our clients light up with joy at the sight of the children in our Day Centre and it seems apt that our first inter-generational session centred on making Christingles. We were all surprised by the children’s ability to refrain from eating the sweets and fruits before decorating the oranges. Almost everyone got involved, though in time we’re hoping to eventually get everyone actively participating in some way. One of our ladies was once a teacher at Ullswater Community College and the children enjoyed a very enthusiastic story time with her. All of the children remained engaged and interested during the visit, something that is not usually an easy task.
The idea for the project stemmed from the Channel 4 series Old People’s Home for 4 Year Old’s, a documentary in which a group of young children became regular visitors of a retirement home. Looking out of our Day Centre windows at Kiddlywinks across the road, it just seemed the perfect opportunity to try something new. Kiddlywinks were excited and keen to join us and together we came up with a plan for our own inter-generational project.
Based on research and past experience we decided to make the sessions consistent and regular, in order for the children and older adults to develop a rapport and try and combat any challenges that dementia in our elders and shyness in our youngsters pose. With the weekly visits we are hoping to see continued positive outcomes for both the children and our older adults. The regularity of the visits should help to build relationships, grow confidence and social skills. We are hoping to grow some real bonds between the two groups.
Gaudium Director Mariusz Waluk has praised the success of the new scheme “It is wonderful to see in practice what so much research has pointed to, that the vitality of our children really does help engage our older citizens, who in turn can give so much experience and wisdom to our youngsters. There are few opportunities for cross-generational interaction these days and to be able to provide a new avenue for both sides to benefit makes us very happy.”
At Gaudium, our goal is to support our clients to live at home and independently for as long as possible. Our Penrith Day Centre provides a wonderful, cosy environment for our clients to socialise and participate in a huge variety of activities. We always strive to provide the best care and opportunities for our clients.
For more information on our Day Centre please feel free to contact our office on 01768 890353 or email us at [email protected].