Tiny tots entertain the elderly in new intergenerational program

A group of pint-sized special guests visits a north Brisbane aged care facility every Wednesday and the residents say they are thrilled.

Elyse Heyn, Quest Newspapers

RESIDENTS at Mercy Community Aged Care in Nudgee have invited some pint-sized visitors into their home for a new program in conjunction with Playgroup Queensland.

Every Wednesday, children involved in the Intergenerational Playgroup Program come along to the Bethesda residence to interact and play with the elderly.

Mercy Community Lifestyle and Leisure Facilitator Linda Rogers said the aged care residents were delighted with the new program.

“All the residents absolutely love coming along to Playgroup every Wednesday,” she said.

“They love seeing all the kids play.

“Many of the residents don’t have exposure to kids and babies of this age.”

Playgroup Queensland CEO Stephen Alderman said the intergenerational program was built around partnerships with the parents/carers, residents and children and allowed the different communities to grow.

“The children feel special because they receive undivided attention from the older generation,” he said.

“The older generation feels needed because they are contributing to the development of the children, and the parents and carers attending the playgroups suddenly find they have a group of people who love their little one as much as they do.”

The children, now familiar with the residents, run to them to greet them each session.

Ms Rogers said the residents had said that Wednesday was now their favourite day of the week.

“The visiting children remind residents of their grandkids and, for some, Playgroup takes them back to a time when they had little ones of their own running around,” she said.

“Many of the residents do not have significant contact with the youngest generation, so Playgroup allows them to meet the children who will be changing the world in the future.”

Article originally published: https://www.couriermail.com.au/questnews/tiny-tots-entertain-the-elderly-in-new-program/news-story/e7d6b319718b1b3c8c42a7171effa668

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