Skip to main content

Carrington Care (NSW)

 Werombi Road, Grasmere, NSW

Intergenerational Reminiscence Project

Carrington Care Grasmere Terrace, Carrington Care Mary Mackillop, Carrington Care Werombi Court, Carrington Care Paling Court

Residential and Home Care - Metropolitan - Organisational wide or multiple home/service program

Award descriptors

  • Consumer engagement and/or co-design
  • Social participation and lifestyle

Innovative partnership with local high school students, where students partnered with aged care residents for a three-month intergenerational reminiscence program.

About the program

Since 2011, our organisation has been engaged in an innovative partnership with Year 11 students from a local Catholic high school, where students are partnered with residents from our residential aged care facilities for a 3-month intergenerational reminiscence program. Each year, 2-3 students are matched with an older person whom they visit every week, with the intention of listening to the resident’s story, learning about the life of the resident and hearing the wisdom of the resident who is encouraged to look back on the things that they have learned throughout their lives.

The students, who are required to submit an application to be considered for the program, are coached in thinking through what questions they might be able to ask that will encourage the older person to share his/her story. They help the resident to remember and explore the significant events of their lives, as well as the small things that have brought meaning even to the mundane moments. This reminiscence might be achieved with the assistance of photographs of the residents’ lives, through listening to music together or through discussion about their families, work, joys, sorrows, etc.

Over the years, there has been a steady increase in the number of students applying to be part of the program. In the first year, eleven students were matched with five residents. In 2017, 18 students will be matched with eight residents, providing even more opportunities for teenagers and older people to engage in this chance for intergenerational reminiscence.

The residents are nominated by staff in their facility and then interviewed by the Pastoral Care Coordinator to determine their willingness to participate in the project. If necessary, consent is also gained in order to contact the residents’ families should family photographs or other memorabilia need to be brought in to assist with the project.

At the conclusion of the 3-month project, the residents and their families are invited to attend a presentation afternoon, where the students make a multi-media presentation of what they have learned of the lives of the residents. Each resident is then given a copy of the presentation in the form of a booklet, along with a DVD, which they can then view again at their own leisure, as well as share them with family or friends who were unable to attend the presentation afternoon.

More information on this program

Julie Philpott at or call (02) 4659 0418

Friday, 21 December 2018 - 6:22am