Student visits form friendships across generations

The elderly and the young benefit from forming friendships in new program (Bigstock)

Age is proving no barrier to the strong friendships that are blooming at a Cairns aged care residence thanks to a new partnership with St Augustine’s College. Source: Cairns Post.

Residents at Mercy Place Westcourt are striking up friendships with Year 11 students from the Catholic school as part of an intergenerational partnership between the school and the aged care home, which aims to encourage companionship and connections between young and old.

About 30 St Augustine’s College students are now visiting Mercy Place Westcourt residents every week to write “life books”, which detail the seniors’ lives, and which are being used by staff to increase their knowledge of the background of individual residents.

Mercy Place Westcourt service manager Angela Cox says the benefits of the partnership extended both ways, with the children and residents involved genuinely enjoying their time together and forming strong bonds.

“We’re delighted by how well our intergenerational partnership with St Augustine’s College is being received, by both the residents and students.

“Our residents love spending time with younger people and the life books that are being created help them to share stories about ‘the good old days’ and to showcase their special hobbies, talents and life lessons.

“As well as residents being able to take a trip down memory lane, the partnership also provides an opportunity for students to get to know ‘someone else’s grandparents’, as many of their grandparents live interstate or overseas."

Mercy Place Westcourt is operated by Mercy Health, a Catholic community not-for-profit provider of care, founded by the Sisters of Mercy and grounded in a 2000-year history of caring for those in need.


St Augustine’s College students and Mercy Place partner to aid companionship (Cairns Post)

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