Care Home Plays Generation Game with Visits from Youngsters
We’ve just reopened our Wednesday playgroup sessions between 10.30am and 12pm and the attendees couldn’t be happier. The remarkable bond seniors share with infants is celebrated during these intergenerational sessions where carers and parents are invited to bring their under-5s to make the most of the wisdom, and playfulness of residents at the care home. …
We’ve just reopened our Wednesday playgroup sessions between 10.30am and 12pm and the attendees couldn’t be happier.
The remarkable bond seniors share with infants is celebrated during these intergenerational sessions where carers and parents are invited to bring their under-5s to make the most of the wisdom, and playfulness of residents at the care home.
Honey Lane is a 38-bed specialist residential dementia care home that prides itself on maintaining links with the local community and providing a range of meaningful activities for residents and their families.
And the initiative certainly has a fan in resident Betty Leigh, 96. “I look forward to the fortnightly toddler group visit”, she says. “It’s the best feeling when the children enter the room as I always get one child who will run over and give me a big cuddle. It makes my day.
“I thoroughly enjoy watching the children play, and watching the reactions on their little faces when they enter a room full of toys is just precious. The children just add such a lovely atmosphere to the home and it makes me feel so happy.”
Lifestyle lead Lisa Gammalliere was thrilled to be able to restart the group, she says: “I am so happy to be able to get our ‘Honey Bees’ intergenerational group up and running again, it’s an exciting feeling having a room full of children who bring such joy and happiness to our residents.
“The interaction between old and young is just priceless to watch as it brings out the inner child in all of us. We’ve bought some new toys for the children and when they arrived, it felt like Christmas!
“Our residents are active members of the wider community and to be able to invite younger generations in, is a welcome opportunity for all of us.”
It’s not just the team and residents at Honey Lane celebrating the reopening of the group. Mum Sara Kite brings two-year-old Nelsie to the group, she says: “Nelsie loved playing with all of the toys and playing hide and seek with one of the ladies at the home.
Seeing all of the children and adults with huge smiles on their faces made it all so special. They bring the best out in one and other. Such a great idea to get everyone together and have a fun time.”
Childminder Meriam attended the session and will be coming back for more, she says: “The intergenerational sessions are a brilliant idea! It’s a fantastic opportunity for our children to build confidence and self-esteem, especially around different ages and in a different setting. This really helps develop their social and emotional skills as well as forming intergenerational relationships.
“The children absolutely love attending as they are always doing different types of play time activities and residents and staff are warm and welcoming which creates a lovely atmosphere.”
Providing play is not just good for children, research shows the elderly can reap great benefits too: it promotes relaxation, reduces stress and helps to maintain cognitive skills. Active play also helps the residents to keep physically fit.