Young & Old, We’re in This Together!
Published 26 Jun 2020
Pre-schoolers and pensioners in Burton upon Trent who became firm friends thanks to a scheme launched by Co-op Childcare linking nurseries with old peoples’ homes have turned to technology to stay in touch during lockdown.
Children at the Co-op Childcare Burton Upon Trent nursery at Queen’s Hospital had been visiting residents at the nearby Amber Wood Care Home every week to play, sing, cook, get artistic and share stories earlier this year.
When the country went into lockdown, they were no longer able to see each other in person. Instead, the two and three-year-olds have been video calling care home residents, singing them songs and getting creative, writing letters and making gifts for their elderly friends, including rainbow drawings.
And the delighted residents have been sending their own letters and drawings in return.
The nursery and care home came together as part of the Generation Play care home visit programme run by many Co-op Childcare nurseries, which are owned by Co-op Midcounties.
It helps build the children’s confidence and social skills, while older people experience better physical and mental health.
Mollie Wain, deputy manager at Co-op Nursery Burton upon Trent, said: “The children just love to chat and learn from the old people.
“They have made fantastic friends at the care home and the residents love the companionship too.
“It can be so much lonelier in care homes when residents can’t see their loved ones during lockdown, so it’s been even more important for us all to keep in touch and spread a little happiness.
“The coronavirus pandemic has really shown us how much both the children and care home residents get out of the Generation Play programme and how much they value each other.”
The nursery has also created a time capsule filled with items from lockdown, including local newspapers and pictures of children’s parents – many of whom are key workers at Queen’s Hospital – wearing PPE.
The time capsule has been buried in the nursery grounds, with a plan to dig it up in the future to help the next generation learn about what happened during the coronavirus outbreak.
Co-op Nursery Burton upon Trent welcomes up to 58 children aged from three months to five-years-old every day from 6.45am to 6.30pm.
To find out more call 0808 301 1793 or visit https://www.littlepioneers.coop/find-your-nursery/burton_nursery/