Coleg Llandrillo's Health and Social Care students recently organised an intergenerational event in partnership with Conwy County Borough Council.
It involved inviting local elderly people to spend a day at college with the young students to discuss a variety of subject matters, with the intention of breaking the social barriers between younger and older people.
The group of 35 Level 2 students got the opportunity to exchange a wide range of views with the older adults. The guests, who all live in a sheltered housing complex in Colwyn Bay, were joined in the Institute of Health and Social Care at the Rhos-on-Sea campus by representatives from their housing association, Cartrefi Conwy. The students planned the event as part of their course module.
The fundamental goal of the workshop was to encourage all parties to get to know each other and make further efforts to build relationships. The students moved around five 'stations', completing activities with different tenants, which afforded them the chance to demonstrate their communication skills, such as eye contact, body language and active listening. The session encouraged the two groups to socialise, exchange thoughts and engage in a selection of activities and aimed to change perceptions that the age groups may have of each other.
One of the visitors, Maureen Maxwell, said:
What a fantastic day we had chatting to the students at Coleg Llandrillo. We have seen another side of young people, as they sometimes get such a bad press. They were very sociable, caring and well-behaved, and saw us as equals, not just old people. From what they told us, the course will benefit them immensely. I wish them all well.
One student, Khia Rogers, said:
It was a great experience hearing how they used to live in days gone by. We were able to communicate in a relaxed atmosphere and some of their childhood stories were amazing. It makes you appreciate all the things we take for granted today.
Health and Social Care lecturer Kate Farmer said:
The day was a complete success: feedback received from both groups was extremely positive. These students are hopefully our health care professionals of the future and it is vital that we, as educational providers, understand some of the issues and concerns that the older generation have identified.
We aimed to alter the misconceptions and stereotypes that sometimes exist between different generations, whilst having fun!
To find out more about our courses in Health and Care, please visit: www.gllm.ac.uk/health
Or call the college's Learner Services team on 01492 542 338.