As a company we strongly encourage social interaction and we wanted to take it one step further by starting this project. We are in a unique situation whereby we provide a catering service across a variety of sectors and therefore age groups. These range from Primary Schools to Secondary Schools up to Colleges and Universities, without forgetting our Business & Industry and Assisted Living Residential sites.
Following the success of a programme put together by Channel 4 – Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds – whereby we saw the influence of innocent, young minds can have on the elderly. We helped to create a channel of communication between our Primary School children and the residents at our Assisted Living sites. This social activity encourages individuals from different walks of life to take the time to write to each other and try to form a written relationship between them.
Radish’s Managing Director, Rebecca Bridgement, wrote a postcard to each of our Primary Schools’ Head teacher inviting them to join in with this opportunity, which has never been done before. We then asked the residents to reply to the children on a frequent basis.
Our overall aim is to diminish or even to put a complete end to loneliness across the two demographics. Last year alone, research showed that 1.2 million older people within England felt chronically lonely and 4,063 calls were made to Childline regarding loneliness and underwent counselling sessions. If we can help to reduce these figures in any way, we will see this activity as successful and worthwhile.
We hope that by receiving the postcard it might just put a smile on someone’s face or create a fun discussion with their friends… or perhaps just for a split second, it keeps that feeling of loneliness at bay.