Bridging the Generational Divide: Children Join Care Home Residents for Chinese New Year Celebrations
Welcoming the year of the golden rat, pupils of Bishop Chavasse Primary School spent their bi-weekly visit with their older friends at Barnes Lodge Care Home learning about Chinese New Year.
A new report by United for All Ages has suggested that Britain is one of the most generationally segregated countries in the world and must take action to end “age apartheid”. The report suggests bringing babies and toddlers into care homes to learn and play together, something Barnes Lodge has been doing for quite some time now.
The children from the reception class at the nearby school rang in the New Year at the Tudeley Lane care home helping their friends get stuck into a craft project, making their own Chinese lanterns.
The children have been visiting residents at the care home for almost two years now, and they have developed a real bond with their older friends. From learning about Remembrance Day and writing poems to fun singalongs, they have all learnt a lot from one another and continue to embrace the intergenerational project.
Nicky Pett, General Manager of Barnes Lodge said: “We started this project with Bishop Chavasse nearly two years ago, and since then, they’ve visited every week and some of our residents have even been to the school. It’s been lovely to watch the relationships develop, the children bring so much joy and even the quieter residents come out of their shell and want to get involved when they’re here. It really is a wonderful project to be a part of.”
Intergenerational projects are proven to be beneficial for all involved, they have the potential to improve the well-being of older people, reduce stigma associated with aging and discrimination against older people. The projects also support youth development, helping to improve reading and listening skills.