2 December, 2019
What happens when you bring a group of older residents to mix with young children in childcare? Clapping hands and singing songs is just one way they spend the morning together. These interactions are made possible by the intergenerational programs implemented in our aged care homes.
Following the opening of the Lenstan and Kensington Apartments at Peace Haven, the Leisure & Lifestyle team have implemented a new program: Intergenerational Playgroup. MCT have become members of Playgroup Tasmania and are now hosting the Peace Haven Possums Playgroup every Monday. Freemasons and Fred French are also lucky enough to have weekly visits from children in their surrounding areas.
The care programs allow children to learn from and connect with an older generation, improve their behaviour and attitude towards older people, and enhance the overall wellbeing of both young and old participants.
For older participants, the programs allow them to pass on their knowledge and interact with young children in a meaningful way. The residents experience an improved sense of life meaning and enhanced self-worth.
Community perceptions of older adults and ageing also tend to shift from negative to positive. This is especially important because older people want to be treated as valued members of society. Intergenerational programs can enhance the quality of relationships between ageing people and children.
The programs also create an opportunity to address ageism in society from an early age and challenge people’s assumptions about the contributions of people living with dementia or experiencing other forms of cognitive decline.