Recognising the benefits of intergenerational activity, Gillingham mum, Emma Pankhurst, recently set up a mums and babies group at a nearby care home for older people.
Residents of Rogers House Residential Care Home in Wigmore have been swapping their morning coffee for a morning playgroup for the past few weeks, as a new mums and babies group has been taking place in the dining room every Monday morning.
Emma Pankhurst, the daughter of a member of staff at Rogers House decided to start the group after bringing her children in to visit the residents. She said: “My mum works here so I used to bring my kids in, the residents loved it and I always thought it’d be such a great idea to have a toddler group here. I spoke to Jackie, the manager about my idea and she thought it sounded good too, so I got a friend involved and we started the group. Lots of local people donated some toys and the group has really taken off!”
Each Monday morning, the dining room fills up with mums and children aged from just six weeks, to five-years-old and the residents join them for a morning of fun and games.
Jackie Miles, Home Manager at Rogers House commented: “There is a lot of new evidence coming to light about the benefits of building relationships between the old and young, so we were delighted to host the toddler group here at Rogers House.
“The residents love it, whether they get involved and play or just watch them, they have found the experience wonderful. It’s really incredible, our oldest resident, Margery had a lovely cuddle with a six-week old baby last week, there is almost a 100-year age gap between them, it was so special.”