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School days at Kilmarnock Heights Home

School days at Kilmarnock Heights Home

Kilmarnock Heights volunteer Bev Simonsen shows where residents went to school.
Kilmarnock Heights volunteer Bev Simonsen shows where residents went to school.

Residents of Enliven’s Kilmarnock Heights Home in Berhampore took a journey back to their childhood during a recent ‘Back to School’ day.

Old school books, mementos and photos were displayed in the home’s lounge to encourage residents to reminisce about their childhood, explains volunteer Bev Simonsen.

“When you compare school life today with what it was like more than 60 years ago it’s easy to see that a lot has changed, so it’s nice to look back and find out what people remember about it,” says Bev.

For some residents it brought back memories that had faded over time.

“Some people can’t remember where they went to school but other people talking about their own school days and seeing the display helped to spark memories and got them talking about the parts they can remember,” says Bev.

Residents were asked questions about their school days and stickers were put on a world map to show where everyone grew up.

“We found out that residents and day guests went to school all over New Zealand as well as overseas. It’s quite interesting to see where people grew up and how they came to live at Kilmarnock Heights Home,” Bev explains.

“We also reminisced about the games we used to play, like marbles and knuckle bones – you could create your own fun by using nothing more than a top and a piece of string.”

Kilmarnock Heights Home recreation officer, Annelize Steyn, says the school day session enabled residents to delve deeper into their childhood memories.

“They remember the sights, the sounds, the smells, and even what their mothers’ wore – the memories can be very vivid,” says Annelize.

“Everyone found out something new about each other, so it was also a great way to deepen their friendships.”

Enliven’s Kilmarnock Heights Home, located at 20 Morton Street in Berhampore, provides rest home and respite care as well as a popular day guest programme.

For more information about Kilmarnock Heights Home, call 04 380 2034, email kilmarnockheights@psc.org.nz or click here.

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