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Playgroup brings young and old together

South Australian aged care organisation ACH Group has partnered with Playgroup SA to deliver an innovative intergenerational playgroup, bringing young and old together.
Four-month-old Olivia having a play with Kapara resident Hope Kallin
Four-month-old Olivia having a play with Kapara resident Hope Kallin

Every Monday morning parents, children and residents meet for a morning of social interaction at ACH Group Kapara Residential Living in Glenelg South.

They engage in childhood activities together, while creating opportunities for children to further develop their skills, for parents to create a local peer support network and provide isolated residents vital community interaction.

Kapara resident Gwen Wauchope, 94, has welcomed parents and children to her home.

“It is lovely to have children here and to be able and interact with them. I was pleasantly surprised to see fathers at the playgroup, being all hands on with their children,” Mrs Wauchope says.

According to Kapara’s Manager, Lyn Bertram the playgroup brings many benefits to the residents.

“Some of our residents haven’t interacted with babies or toddlers for half a century but they are really enjoying it and taking the chance to recall memories from their own parenting or childhood days,” Mrs Bertram says.

Research suggests that intergenerational playgroups can break down feelings of isolation often associated with ageing and increase wellbeing in older people because they feel valued and connected to the community.

For families the relationship with older people add new dimensions to the life experiences of young children, especially when grandparents are not around.

Jessica Zaknic, mother of 8-month-old Jazlyn, hadn’t joined a playgroup until she heard of this one.

“I put off joining a playgroup and have been waiting for something like this to come up and get me excited to join. I am passionate about the idea that my daughter will connect with an older generation.

"Her grandparents are fairly young, they are still working and have busy lifestyles, so I like the idea that she gets to learn and hear about the generation that is living at Kapara today,” she says.

The intergenerational playgroup operates every Monday morning from 10-11:30am at the ACH Group Kapara Residential Living, Moseley Street, Glenelg South.

If you would like more information about the intergenerational playgroup or would like to attend, contact Playgroup SA on 1800 171 882 or Leonie on 0409 282 739.

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