My name is Megan, I am 15 years old and I volunteered at South Lodge residential care home with Focus’ Roots & Shoots intergenerational project.
We spent time with the elderly, painting plant pots, fairy house doors, bird houses and wooden biscuits. I spent time with one of their female residents. At first I was quite nervous but I soon realised that she was as well. I think I helped make a difference as by the end I had participated in a full conversation where I found out that she was an only child, that she had three children of her own and that one – her daughter – was a professor at a nearby university.
Working with this lady showed me that they don’t really get to do stuff like the arts & crafts session we did with them that often – and if they do, they probably can’t remember it because of their dementia. I could tell just by listening to this lady that she was grateful to have us paying attention to her and to have us there helping her create some art really.
If I was asked to give tips to someone volunteering with the elderly, I would have to say that you must always support them, encourage them and try to make them believe in themselves a bit more. I would love to participate in a similar activity again.