Youth meets experience

November 7, 2018

Storytelling is one of the most critical forms of sharing knowledge that shapes lives and educates younger generations. The Mayflower Resident Bio History Project is an integral part of Mayflower’s program of activities to provide our residents with meaningful engagement with students from St Finbar’s Primary School, East Brighton.

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Groups of grade five students were paired with a resident, who they visited with over a four week period, at Mayflower Brighton. These students learnt about their resident’s history and formed great friendships during their time spent talking and listening.

Residents recounted stories about where they grew up, their family members and important milestones in their lives. This walk down memory lane was thoroughly enjoyed by our residents and allowed the students a glimpse of the experiences and knowledge retained by residents.

At the end of the four week period, students delivered beautifully displayed presentations documenting their resident’s life and stories. This special presentation was marked by a function for students and residents. Residents also enjoyed musical performances from the students.

One resident, Anna Marshmann was the recipient of a lovingly presented document of her life which was depicted through the eyes of two students who presented Anna’s story with a sense of humour. They recounted a tale of Anna’s teacher, who didn’t understand her love of ballet.

“He would throw chalk at her and yell with his hands on his hips ’You’ve got to have a brain too you know!’”

Three students wonderfully recounted Willamina Van Die’s story of her life, from her childhood in Scotland to her experience living at Mayflower with her sister, Nessie Kluckhenn. Willamina was delighted with her prepared biography.

The presence of young people in our aged care facilities is a source of great happiness and joy to our residents. The interaction and friendships that can be formed are of mutual benefit to young and older people alike.

In addition to learning significant life lessons from our residents, the students were presented with a Mayflower certificate and a small gift of appreciation. However, it is the friendships that were formed, enriching the lives of these young students that will be remembered long into the future.

Mayflower would like to thank St Finbar’s Staff and students who were involved in this meaningful project.

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