Our story so far
Friend in Deed is a Norfolk based charity which has helped to form hundreds of intergenerational friendships across Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridge and Essex through weekly visits to residential and care settings.
Our work has won numerous awards, including the 2020 Great British Care Awards for care innovation and Good Morning Britain's One Million Minutes Community Award.
Why our work is needed
Our vision has always been to bring generations together to promote kindness, improve mental and physical health and support social development through something as simple as friendship.
One of the most effective ways to create more connected and resilient communities is to connect people of all ages and to promote kindness in communities. When people have more purpose and can see how their kindness and support affects others, it in turn strengthens their own resilience.
Intergenerational interaction has significant therapeutic benefits, especially for those living with dementia. We have seen increased engagement during our sessions, with residents smiling, laughing and talking more. It is easy to see how these interactions improve the quality of life for many older people.
The sessions are also positive for the children and young people, with parents and teachers describing improved social interaction, verbal communication and behaviour.
The impact of lockdown
We are more aware than ever of the consequences of isolation on our older friends.
Since the UK lockdown in March, our face to face visits were forced to cease, and residents have limited opportunity to see family, friends and take part in activities. We have stayed in touch with our older friends in various ways including letters and pictures through the post, a weekly newsletter, videos, photos and craft projects which help to maintain connection and support care home staff.
We continue to see the impact of the extreme isolation on our older friends, including those living with dementia, and know that we can do more to help. We also see the increased pressure on educational settings, and the importance of resilience in younger generations and family units.
We can do more with your help
Our project, All Ages Love Learning will bring together school aged children and our older friends through specifically created intergenerational projects covering the topics of Healthy Lifestyles, Environmental Impact and Happiness/Positivity.
The schemes will be created by educational professionals to stimulate, inspire and enthuse both generations - with outcomes shared via post, photos and video.
Connecting schools and care homes will benefit the old and young but also different age groups in between as their family members, school children/loved ones in care homes benefit.
Your donation will help us to connect more pupils with residents in care homes, by supporting the creation and delivery of a brand new scheme of intergenerational learning.
It will contribute towards the purchase of much needed resources and significantly increase our reach across Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridge and Essex.
This project comes at a time where loneliness and isolation are more prevalent than ever, and your help allows us to adapt the work we do in a meaningful and safe way.
You can be secure in the knowledge that your full donation will only go towards the development and implementation of this project, not the core costs of Friend in Deed.