West Denton residents share their creative flair and feathers with teenage volunteers
Residents living at Comfort House in West Denton welcomed the group from YMCA Newcastle into their home for a week of activities.
For the past 15 months residents at the setting run by Akari Care have been taking part in the pioneering HenPower project, a creative initiative run by Gateshead older people’s charity Equal Arts.
With hen-keeping as its focus the project sees artists leading regular arts, dance and music sessions to help improve wellbeing and tackle loneliness.
Douglas Hunter, Equal Arts co-director, said: “HenPower gives people a role and responsibility and residents can be involved as much as they wish. It moves away from passive care you so often see in care settings and harnesses people’s imagination and interests to empower themselves.”
The care setting welcomed in the group of 16-19-year-olds who wanted to spend a week working with staff and residents as part of a personal development programme.
Their teamwork will be captured in a large, textile wall-hanging designed and made by residents working with Equal Arts’ artist Hannah Philipson.
She said: “It’s been fantastic to see people getting to know one another as they join in with felting, proggy making and painting to help create their own wall-hanging. Creativity can span different ages and can help people to express themselves and communicate.”
Robyn Smith-Davis, assistant team leader with YMCA Newcastle, said: “It was up to the group to select where they wanted to work and soon after visiting Comfort House they knew they wanted to come back and support those living here.
“They’ve worked together painting garden furniture, improving the fencing around the chicken coop and joining in the daily activities.” ,p>Currently supporting more than 700 residents in over 20 North East care homes, HenPower has also launched in North Yorkshire, Brighton, Australia and London where it received the backing of London Mayor Boris Johnson.
Click here to find out more about our projects supporitng older people.
Share this Article
Please help us fund more projectsDonate