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When a Preschool Was Opened Inside a Dementia Care Home, All Heaven Broke Loose

in People 291 views

They say it takes a village to raise a child. Centered on that concept of communal flourishing, Northwest England’s first intergenerational care village, home to both older people and young children living and learning together, recently celebrated its official opening.

Stimulation, learning, fun—these are activities that are known to delay the progression of dementia, and what better way to add these critical elements of life to a daily regimen than to let a flock of preschoolers do it?

Belong is a not-for-profit care operator, specializing in dementia care. They have care villages in England’s northwest, and West Midlands regions. Now marking the latest dementia-friendly development, Belong welcomed the Lord Mayor of Cheshire, Sheila Little, to declare the latest village in the county officially open.

The pioneering facility on City Road supports older people to live their lives independently. The national charity Ready Generations partnered with Belong to run the village’s integrated day nursery. The nursery children feature in the daily life of residents and tenants, enjoying experiences together including shared mealtimes, stories, arts and crafts, and exercise.

“It was a pleasure to look ’round the village and officially open Belong Chester, and to meet staff and residents,” said Lord Mayor Sheila Little.

“This is a particularly exciting and innovative development as it includes a nursery, which benefits both the children who attend and the residents who visit to play and read to them. I look forward to visiting again to see how the village is growing and developing.”

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Boy Whose IQ is the Same as Einstein Joins Mensa to Make Some Friends

in People/School 37 views

After receiving the same IQ score as Einstein and Stephen Hawking on a test, a young immigrant to the UK joined a pretty cool club to make new friends.

Mensa is an international group for high-IQ individuals founded in 1947. The group welcomes children and adults in the 98th percentile of IQs worldwide in order to share ideas and help them reach their full potential.

12-year-old Cyrus Leung was born in Hong Kong, and was accepted into The Mensa Society after passing his test with 160, just two points short of the highest score.

“I read some articles about other children who have joined Mensa and thought it would be good for Cyrus…to find some friends who have a similar interest to him and then he can try and develop better in his interests,” said Cyrus’ father, Frank Leung.

Cyrus loves to play the piano and also enjoys science and math, if the glasses and 160 IQ weren’t enough to give it away.

“I am very proud of myself,” said the young man, who had apparently forgotten to bring his watch to the test and was nervous.

“He was nervous he wouldn’t know how much time he’s got left and would run out of time to do the questions,” said Frank. “But he was really, really excited as he didn’t expect to get such a high score on the exam.”

“He’s really proud of himself and I think this is something he will remember for the rest of his life.”

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Baby That Had Spinal Surgery While in the Womb Can Now Walk and Run

in Health/People 75 views
Piper Kelly, a healthy 5 year old captured on the fter undergoing spinal surgery while in the womb of her mother. November 12 2023. See SWNS story SWNAspine. A little girl whose parents feared she might be wheelchair-bound for life can now walk and run - thanks to £9k womb surgery. Georgia Axford and Tyler Kelly, then just 19 and 21, were told their unborn baby had spina bifida after the 20-week scan.The condition causes weakness or paralysis in the lower limbs - and the parents were told it was likely their child wouldn't walk.The couple decided to travel to Germany for treatment, which saw the unborn baby operated on in the womb - at a cost of £9,000.

A little girl whose parents were told she would never walk is now running around like other 5-year-olds after receiving emergency spinal surgery while still in the womb.

This miracle of modern medicine was available to first-time parents Georgia Axford and Tyler Kelly, then just 19 and 21, who were told their unborn baby had spina bifida after an ultrasound at 20 weeks.

The condition causes weakness or paralysis in the lower limbs, and the parents were told it was likely their child wouldn’t walk.

The couple decided to travel to Germany for treatment, which saw the unborn baby operated on in the womb at a cost of just £9,000, or around $11,500.

Piper-Kohl Kelly was then born healthy in July 2018 and named after surgeon Dr. Thomas Kohl. Now five, she can walk and run and recently took part in her school’s sports day.

“Seeing her run on the tracks was amazing. I never thought she’d be able to do something like that,” said Georgia. “Sometimes it doesn’t feel real. I think back to what we were told, and they were really negative about Piper’s diagnosis.”

Spina bifida can leave sufferers dependent on supports or crutches, and in severe cases, they can be wheelchair-bound. Doctors were confident that this would be the case for Piper-Kohl.

Georgia hails from South Yorkshire, in the Northeast of England. For all the stress and negativity of the diagnosis, and even though Piper was induced at 32 weeks and sat in the neonatal intensive care unit for 52 days, they ended up getting the chance to live a normal life from the same moment as other babies.

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Woman Lets Her Baby Scribble on the Walls–Now He’s A Talented Young Artist

in Art 389 views

Four-year-old Santiago Daniel Peña García started scribbling on the walls before his first birthday, but rather than fretting about the labor and cost of repainting the wall, his mom focused on what the habit might allow him to become.

Adianée Peña García never stopped him, and now her son paints every day and produces new pieces daily, including a version of Starry Night by Van Gogh.

Adianée said she saw her son was so happy with his crayons and a big white wall as a canvas, and she couldn’t bring herself to stop him.

“I had just bought some colored pencils and I didn’t want him to ruin them, so I got him crayons,” she said, explaining when it took off. “He basically painted every wall in the house. Our bedroom, the hallway, the kitchen, and the living room were covered.”

Santiago Daniel’s drawings were such that the family even had to re-paint the apartment before they moved out, but Adianée thinks it was worth it because she raised an artist.

Santiago Daniel’s scribblings weren’t everybody’s tastes, and Alianée’s brother, who lived with the pair at the time, didn’t like it.

“At the beginning, my brother didn’t like it because it wasn’t our house, but then he saw how much Santiago Daniel enjoyed it,” she said. “The landlord saw it too when we left and he looked so shocked, but we were already painting over it so it was fine.”

Alianée believes that stopping the tot would have stifled his passion for art and says other parents should follow her lead.

“I think if he had done it and I had taken away his crayons it would have killed his passion for creativity,” she said. “I’ve seen parents do that and their kids just don’t enjoy painting like Santiago Daniel does. I would recommend other parents let their children be.”

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10-Year-old Girl’s Idea for a ‘Postbox to Heaven’ is Rolled Out Nationally Across Cemeteries in UK

in People 52 views

A young girl’s idea for a ‘postbox to heaven’ so she could write to her grandparents has been realized at cemeteries across the UK.

10-year-old Matilda Handy came up with the suggestion after both her grandparents died, five years apart.

Her mother, Leanne, approached the Gedling Crematorium in Nottingham last year with the idea—and they heartily responded by erecting an old post box painted white and gold just in time for Christmas.

The emotional endeavor proved so popular that they now have been rolled out across 40 sites in England, Scotland, and Wales.

“Matilda was the first person to put a message in our first memorial post box at Gedling last December,” said her mom, who works for the company.

“We had no idea then that, one year later, there would be a memorial post box at every one of Westerleigh Group’s sites—bringing comfort to people all over the country.”

Matilda’s grandmother worked for the post office, which made the first ‘Letters to Heaven’ box even more moving.

Soon after installation, more than 100 letters were dropped in the first box, which aimed to be a comfort to relatives longing for loved ones on anniversaries and holidays.

The idea has since been adopted by UK funeral directors, too, and Leanne said other countries are doing the same.

Matilda told SWNS news, “I am so thankful that our post boxes are able to help not just me and my friends and family but people all over the UK and as far away as Australia.”

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More Physical Activity is Related to Less Respiratory Infections in Children

in Health 208 views

Scientists have found that higher levels of physical activity measured by steps taken per day and hours spent playing sports reduced young children’s susceptibility to upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs.)

A secondary finding of note was that the study also took into account whether the house had smokers, pet hair, which vaccines the children had received, whether they had siblings, and what their sleep patterns were like, none of which had any association with susceptibility to URTIs in either direction.

We’ve all heard from our parents or grandparents about how much they played outside compared to the young ones today. Indeed they often make it seem like the doors to their house were locked between the end of school and dinner time.

Scientists from Poland wanted to see what kinds of exposure and activities reduce children’s susceptibility to URTIs, and their results make our grandparents sound all the wiser.

104 Polish children aged 4-7 from Warsaw had their physical activity monitored with pedometers between the fall-winter school year of 2018 and 2019. Their parents filled out scientific questionnaires regarding various details mentioned above, as well as the perception of URTI symptoms such as coughing or a runny nose.

The authors found that as the average daily number of steps taken by children throughout the study period increased by 1,000, the number of days that they experienced symptoms of URTIs decreased by an average of 4.1 days.

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Parents met by changes to Watertown summer playground program

in Entertainment/Place/Sports 727 views

WATERTOWN — A small group of children sat at a picnic table at the North Hamilton playground playing the board game Sorry on a pleasant summer afternoon earlier this week.

“Is it my turn?” asked 6-year-old Bryson VanPatten.

A few minutes later, the little boy got bored and joined a dodgeball game a short distance away.

It’s that time again for making Boondoggle projects, playing kickball and sitting down for a game of Sorry at the city’s summer playground program.

This summer, playgrounds are at the North Elementary School, Thompson Park, North Hamilton and alternate sites at Emerson Place on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and at Academy Street on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

The staffed playgrounds are open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays through Fridays until Aug. 12.

Two playground attendants are on duty at each playground, which includes playground equipment, a picnic table, porta-potty and access to water.

It’s the second summer that the playground program is back after an interruption caused by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

But there are some changes that the city Parks and Recreation Department has implemented, which has caused some confusion.

Recently, parent Krystin LaBarge expressed some concerns and wanted some clarification about the program.

“It’s a wonderful resource for our community and I’m happy to see it’s happening, albeit with quite a few changes from the rec program in the past,” she said.

She’d like to see the parks department do a better job to let the public know that the program is available.

Ms. LaBarge also thinks that more detailed information should be provided to parents.

She also mentioned some confusion about its rules and policies, especially regarding whether parents need to attend the playgrounds with their children.

Scott M. Weller, parks and recreation superintendent, said it’s a drop in program that has to follow state Department of Health regulations.

If a child normally frequents the neighborhood playground on their own without a parent, they don’t have to have an adult with them and they are welcome to stay as long as they’d like, he said.

If the child is too young to visit on their own, they need to be accompanied by a parent, he said.

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