Braehead pupils pictured with residents of Crosslet House care home.
By Bill Heaney
Braehead Primary School in Dumbarton has scooped a national award in recognition of their heart-warming inter-generational project with Crosslet House care home.
Pupils attended at Strathclyde University for the Generations Working Together (GWT) Conference and were excited to win the award for Evaluating Impact on Inter-generational Learning.
GWT understands the importance of inter-generational projects and The Evaluating Impact award recognises projects that have demonstrated exceptional commitment to evaluating the effectiveness of their work.
Minister for Equalities and Older People, Christine McKelvie, MSP, and Labour councillors John Miller and Clare Steel.
New York Professor Matt Kaplin, along with delegates from Australia and Spain and the Minister for Equalities and Older People, Christine McKelvie, MSP were all impressed and encouraged with the inspirational learning project and the benefits to both pupils and residents.
Primary seven pupils have been visiting the residents in the care home for five years as part of the initiative, which originally began as a pen-pal scheme. The pupils and residents enjoyed sending and receiving letters so much they arranged for the children to visit the care home.
Residents look forward to the fortnightly visits, when the children work with residents on dementia friendly activities, physical exercise, arts and crafts and gardening to promote positive and enhanced health and well-being.
Feedback received about the initiative tells how on the days of visits, the children come to school with a spring in their step and in the care home, residents are excited and keen to get up and moving with the children.
Councillor Clare Steel, Convener of Educational Services, said: “Congratulations to the school and the care home on this great award. The benefits of the visits to both the pupils and the residents is delightful to see. There is a real connection between the children and the residents who show a genuine interest and respect for each other and it’s lovely to see how their relationships have grown over the years and how the children motivate and bring joy to the residents.”
Councillor John Miller, Vice Convener of Educational Services, said: “This is an exceptional project and it’s lovely to see the bond the children and residents have with each other. This partnership has mutual benefits to everyone involved as it teaches young people to be kind and patient as well as learning of the challenges old age brings. Equally the children bring so much joy to the residents and they look forward to and enjoy their visits very much. Well done to Braehead Primary and everyone at Crosslet House on winning this award, it’s very well deserved.”