Youth meets life experience as nursery children visit Friary Court

Young and old came together at our Friary Court extra care scheme to enjoy lunch and share stories.

Children from Giggles Galore nursery in Lincolnshire visited the customers on Wednesday, July 10 to take part in a meet and greet, sing songs and enjoy lunch together.

The day was organised by Scheme Manager Sarah McClatchey and her neighbour Paula Somers, who is the manager and director of the nursery, to help the youngsters be aware of others and develop their communication skills.

Sarah said: “Paula and I often talked about how nice it would be if we got together and arranged for the children to come to Friary Court and meet the residents to share stories and life experiences.

“Children bring so much enjoyment to our lives and this doesn’t change because we are old.  When I informed our residents what I had planned they were so excited and I cannot tell you how happy, encouraging and motivated they were on the day. 

“For the residents living with dementia, their spirits were raised and their moods changed, helping them become more communicative.

“They were so welcoming of the children, laughter filled the scheme. They met with a lot of children and asked questions. 

“The children sang songs before lunch service and the residents sang along, joining in with the actions and clapped.

“Once lunchtime arrived, the children helped to serve the starters before sitting alongside the residents with their packed lunch boxes.  The interaction with the children was wonderful to see, as well as the warmth and confidence that was shown throughout their visit.

“The whole day was emotional, loving, happy, exciting and above all, it showed how caring and respectful the children were to the residents. 

“I am so proud of everyone who took part and how supportive and encouraging the staff from Friary Court and Giggles Galore were with the residents and children. We hope to do this again soon.”

Nicola Smith, from Giggles Galore, said trips such as this were important for the development of the children.

She said: “We took 17 children all aged four on the day.

“We wanted to make sure the children had an awareness of others, could develop their communication and social skills and learn from others, all while developing their confidence.

“They also got to experience a bus journey.

“The whole day was amazing for the residents and children alike and there were huge smiles all around.

“The children talked about it all the way home and with their parents afterwards!”

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