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Children entertain elderly

Children at a Chichester school welcomed care home residents to their grounds on Monday afternoon.


Pupils from Oakwood School hosted their guests for a tea party for the second year running.


Deputy head teacher, Yvonne Lee, said the aim was to reach out to the community.


She said: “We have around five of our care homes from the area that we liaise with and regularly the younger children from around two and a half to six go out and visit the homes in small groups.


“They do fun activities and crafts and the elderly come to a lot of our events and shows so they are all familiar faces now. It’s really lovely.”


Yvonne said it was important for children to understand the elderly were part of their community and part of their lives and having respect.


She added: “It’s important that they work alongside each other to feel valued and reach out. We are very aware that we are extremely blessed with our facilities. We are very lucky and if we can do anything to bring people together to use the facilities and share the happiness then it’s a great thing to do.


“The children get all excited especially to visit the care homes. We also know that some of the residents don’t get out. It’s all very natural and not forced.”


Linda Farr, activities co-ordinator, and Anna Paterson, registered manager from Cornelius House in Fishbourne, had brought residents along for the tea party and said it was a wonderful event.


Linda said: “They are really good to us. We have been four times here and we really enjoy it. They really look after everybody and everyone enjoys themselves.


“The word gets around in the home and we have more and more people wanting to come each time. When we came in, the children were waiting outside and we had a little welcome. They are all very attentive.”


Anna added: “It takes the residents back in time to when their own children were at school and their grandchildren. They have a real connection.


“The children don’t have any expectations.”


Olivia Dickens, aged ten, said she really enjoyed the afternoon. She said: “I greeted people at the door and served tea and cake.


“It’s been really nice to do it because we’ve given people a really nice day. It’s a really good feeling.


“I did a speech and drama piece from Macbeth where I was one of the witches. I think it went quite well.”


Lexi Cotterel, also aged ten, said everyone was really friendly and she enjoyed making them smile.


She added: “I performed a piece from The Jungle Book, we did the Bear Necessities and Monkey Business. Our guests were joining in, dancing and clapping along and smiling.”


Isobel Ford, aged 11, also helped serve tea and coffee. She said: “I really enjoyed serving them teas and coffees and I also did a speech and drama piece from The Tempest.


“I really enjoyed that because I rehearsed really hard, just to try and get it right. It was just really fun!”

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