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

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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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