LOCAL toddlers and pensioners are the best of friends thanks to a new project.
Ten 3-4-year-olds from Hop Skip and Jump Nursery visited residents at Meadowlark Care Home to see if an inter-generational session would benefit both parties.
Meadowlark activities coordinator Liz Jamieson organised the meeting with nursery manager Beth Campbell after they read about similar schemes around the UK in a Care Inspectorate newsletter.
“The children had a wonderful time singing and chatting to the residents,” said Liz. “They showed them how they colour-in. Both parties loved the playtime so much we have planned for more visits.”
Everyone sat around tables together using crayons, snacking and singing nursery songs.
Beth was amazed by how well everyone interacted, with no encouragement from the organisers.
She said: “In my 30 years in the nursery business, I’ve never seen anything like it – I was crying with laughter!
“Everyone was so matter of fact with each other - it was as if there was no age difference.
“They an immediate connection, talking, giggling and swapping names.
“One resident was in tears when we had to leave and insisted on waving the children off to our minibus. “The visit went way beyond my expectations.”
Residents have been asking when their new pals will be back - thankfully, both parties are organising monthly visits.
“It was a thoroughly enjoyable thanks to the Meadowlark staff who set the scene for us,” added Beth.
“Everyone agreed, it was beneficial for both the children and the residents.”