Willow care home in Chesterfield has teamed up with students at a local school to bridge the generation gap and share life experiences.
Willows care home on Norbriggs Road received a visit from a group of students from Netherthorpe School once a week for six weeks. The young pupils partnered up with a service user from the care home and discussed how things have changed for each different generation and ultimately created a book based on their shared experiences.
One service user in particular enjoyed sharing his unusual life and visited the school joined by a group of residents with a homemade card and chocolates along with other participants to show their appreciation.
Bob Porter, 86, has recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and has really benefitted from sharing his stories and in return learning about modern day technology.
Bob said: “This programme has been the best thing I have ever done. As a young boy I spent my life moving from different care homes until I was evacuated during the war. The pupils from the school loved hearing my war stories and I looked forward to their visits every week. They told me all about modern day technology and it is really interesting to see how things have changed since I was that age.”
Rachel Batham, Head Teacher at Netherthorpe School said, “The students were reluctant at first, worrying what to say, but after the first ten minutes they looked forward to their weekly visits.
“They exchanged conversations and banter with the residents. They enjoyed getting first-hand accounts of events that they had only read about in history books. The students made an attachment to the different characters so much and are now planning to visit their new friends during the school holidays. Students said they didn’t want the sessions to end, they had a brilliant time and thought it was a fantastic project. They said they hope to keep this connection going”.
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