Borough Care, has linked up with The Challenge, one of the leading providers of the National Citizen Service. National Citizen Service projects will be taking place initially at two of Borough Care’s homes, Shepley House in Hazel Grove and Lisburne Court in Offerton.
National Citizen Service is a government-backed programme that brings together young people from different backgrounds for a common purpose. Open to young people between the ages of fifteen and seventeen, the programme helps them develop skills for their working life and the transition into adulthood.
The first Borough Care project recently took place at Shepley House. A group of young people visited the home to discuss with residents and staff what the project should entail. As the home had recently put up some greenhouses and has apple trees, it was decided to create an allotment area. To raise money for the materials to complete the projects, the NCS volunteers did a sponsored walk around the trail of giant painted frogs in Stockport. Local companies also kindly donated products. During their volunteer day, the young people constructed two raised beds and planted them out, one with vegetable seeds and one with fruit. Shepley House residents will be involved in helping to look after the fruit and vegetables, which will be used by the home’s catering team.
Commenting on the National Citizen Service project Nerys Carpenter, Home Manager at Shepley House, says: “It’s been fantastic having the young people in to do the project. They have been brilliant around the residents, who have really enjoyed sitting and chatting to them. The young people were very enthusiastic, came up with some good ideas and really got stuck into the project. Besides helping with the allotment, we wanted to create another area that residents can come and sit out in, as at the moment everyone congregates in the same space. We decided the building wall by the new seating area needed brightening up so it would be a nicer place to sit. The young people presented a design for this mural and everyone at Shepley House loved it. Being very colourful, the design fits perfectly with Borough Care’s logo and strapline ‘Life in Colour’. At Borough Care, we believe our residents should live colourful lives and continue to do the things they love. Now the project is completed, our residents are looking forward to enjoying the outside space and sampling the fruit and veg. We’re keen to maintain the relationships that have developed between the young volunteers and our residents through visits and other activities in the future.”
The mural design was the idea of art loving Olivia Barry, 16, one of the NCS volunteers working on the Shepley House project. The home staff and residents said they wanted something colourful so Olivia decided upon a rainbow as the main part of the design, as it rt loving heerful.is so bright and cheerful. Olivia’s fellow volunteer, Scarlet Aubert, from Gatley, decided to participate in NCS to make new friends and help her become more confident. Scarlet says: “I’ve really enjoyed being part of the team; everyone has got on well together. I like helping others and, in doing this project, it feels like we’re all making a difference. The residents I have spoken to have all loved what we’ve done, which is great.”
Dr Mark Ward, CEO at Borough Care, says: “Intergenerational relationships help enrich the lives of older and younger people alike and have many benefits for all concerned. Getting involved with the National Citizen Service is a great way for our residents to interact with young people and for the young volunteers to make a positive contribution to the lives of older people.”