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Celebrating 'Many Years' Together

Date Published: 31 May 2018
Many Years web

Rutland Care Village recently hosted a party marking the end of ‘Many Years’, an inspiring inter-generational project led by Rutland County Council.

Over the last couple of months, a small group of preschool children from ‘Scallywags’ nursery have been visiting the Brambles Social Centre at Rutland Care Village, spending quality time with residents aged from 71 – 90 years. 

The aim of the group has been to encourage interaction between generations and explore the positive effects of bringing young children and older adults together.

The celebration buzzed with warmth and chatter as participants young and old received certificates and reflected on the fun they’d had together. One of the residents, Jilly, gave a heartfelt vote of thanks to everyone involved, expressing how the group had “…loved every minute of it”. This enthusiasm was shared by everyone, with Caroline Garnett-Clarke, Scallywags’ Nursery Manager, describing the project as “a wonderful experience for the children”.

“I loved the idea of Jake spending time with older people who weren’t his grandparents. He really looked forward to visiting them and talked about what they did together; it obviously struck a chord with him.”
Gillian, mother of a preschool participant 

Many Years web 02

At the other end of the spectrum, Patrick Kelleher was thrilled with how the project helped his mum, Lily, transition into residential care in January. 

“Mum has loved being part of this project and often talks about the children and what they’ve been up to. It definitely helped her to settle in when she first moved here and put my mind at rest that she’s somewhere very warm and loving. It’s been great for all concerned.” 
Patrick Kelleher

Many Years web 03

A truly collaborative effort, the project’s success hinged on a huge commitment from everyone involved. 

“I’m so proud of the team who made it happen. It took months of preparation and a lot of hard work, but standing here today, seeing the positive impact it has had, makes it all worthwhile. This kind of work is proven to benefit overall wellbeing; recognising and responding to the different needs of our community. Connecting different generations together brings meaning and joy to people, who might otherwise feel very isolated and alone, while helping create stronger communities.” 
Kelly McAleese, a Project Leads for Rutland County County Council 

“This has been a really exciting opportunity for both old and young people to get together, share experiences and learn from each other.” 
Cllr Alan Walters, Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care and Health 

“A great example of the positive benefits of actively promoting intergenerational connections, this project reflects Rutland County Council’s ethos of building stronger communities.” 
Cllr Richard Foster, Portfolio Holder for Safeguarding Children and Young People 

Those involved in running Many Years will now evaluate the project’s success, the positive feedback it has received and the partnership that has been created. The hope is that Many Years will continue and be used as a model for similar projects in future – perhaps focusing on differing age groups and community settings. 

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