PROJECTS that reach across the generations from the youngest to the oldest will be on display this week at the University of Ulster proving that age isn’t a barrier in binding communities together.
The exhibition, which marks European Day on Solidarity between Generations on April 29, is backed by the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People (NICCY) and the Older People’s Advocate.
The launch was formally welcomed by Junior Minister Robin Newton and Junior Minister Gerry Kelly, and guest speakers included Bairbre de Brún MEP and Jim Nicholson MEP.
Among the intergenerational projects showcased is ‘Afternoon Delight’, funded by the Beth Johnson Foundation. The unique radio show is presented by older volunteers and broadcast every Monday afternoon on Feile FM. The presenters share and compare experiences with young people, then distribute copies of the show to schools and youth organisations.
Other projects showcased include: St Vincent De Paul, Turflodge; Breakthru, Dungannon; Comber Primary School; Newhill Youth Link Community Association; Newington Day Centre; RNID Kinghan Church and Jordanstown Schools; Star Neighbourhood Centre; North Queen Street Centre; Trinity Street Centre; VSB Belfast; Presbyterian Board of Social Witness; and Northern Ireland Women's European Platform.
“This exhibition celebrates what young and older people have in common rather than emphasising differences,” said Patricia Lewsley. “Today, on European Day on Solidarity between Generations we celebrate what we can achieve by working together.
“Although this month, as part of our ongoing Make it Right campaign, we are asking young people to ‘Have Their Say’ we are delighted that older people are also ‘having their say’ through the intergenerational projects we see here today.”
Dame Joan Harbison said: “The projects presented as a celebration of intergenerational work are very exciting and we hope will act as inspiration to others to get involved. Getting to know each other and understand the issues which affect others can only be good for society and encourage solidarity of outlook and purpose. What better way to do this than by sharing, working or learning together? Congratulations to all involved and we look forward to the development of this work.”
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