As World Kindness Day approaches (13 November), Ashridge Court Care Centre is reaching out to the community to ask people to write to its residents.
Within just 24 hours of a recent Facebook appeal by Gemma Carey, the home’s head of activities, the home had received 200 replies from people eager to help. As well as families with children, they included elderly people living alone (or with a much-loved pet) who had had little contact with others since the start of the pandemic.
Since then, letters, cards, drawings and poems have poured in from people of all ages around the country. Contact has also been established with well-wishers even as far afield as Australia! Residents have been busy responding via branded Ashridge postcards, letters, their own artwork and even poems.
“They’re enjoying establishing relationships with lots of different people from so many different places,” says Gemma. “Covid-19 really did shrink everyone’s world for such a long time, but this is now bringing a huge smile to all their faces and it’s lovely to see.”
“It’s really motivational for our residents, too. If someone’s taken the time and trouble to write to them, or even send a poem or drawing, they have to use their skills to respond and this is both stimulating and enjoyable for them,” adds home manager Julie Wills.
“We’re also delighted to be hearing from older people, too, and hope that we can establish regular phone calls and meet-ups. Elderly people are often isolated, especially at this time of year, which is why World Kindness Day means so much. Of course, there’s no reason why kindness should be confined to just one day – it should apply all year round!”
Introduced in 1998, World Kindness Day is celebrated across the globe every year on 13 November and promotes kindness in all its forms.