The Stockport Pen Pal project has bridged the gap between Janet Coxon, 97, and a Year 7 student from Stockport School, as part of a campaign to bridge the gap between teenagers and the older generation in Stockport.
Home Instead Senior Care in Stockport and Tameside teamed up with Stockport School to launch an intergenerational project in order to connect local youngsters and the elderly who live in the community. The project saw students in Year 7 write letters to clients from Home Instead Senior Care. In return, the clients wrote letters back to the students with the help of their caregivers.
Janet was a flight sergeant in the Women’s Royal Air Force (WRAF) during the Second World War and left Scotland to join up the force England as a very young girl. In 1940 she moved to Bramhall and in 1965 moved to her current home in Mile End, just down the road from Stockport School where her son, Ian, attended as a youngster in the late 60s and 70s.
Janet (pictured left during her days in the WRAF), said,
Working in the WRAF was an adventure and a challenge. I was proud to serve Britain and work with the aircraft.”
Clare Cliff from Home Instead, who helped launch the project, commented:
We have all really enjoyed working with Mr Matt Williamson, Acting Director of Progress and Director of Intervention for Year 7 students from Stockport School. To see the teens engaging with the elderly by writing letters has been fantastic and inspiring. Our clients have really enjoyed reading their letters.”
David Moore, owner of Home Instead Stockport and Tameside commented:
We are delighted with the success of the pen pal project so far. As we care for older people in their own homes, our CAREGivers often hear all about the stories of their clients’ past. Many of them have fascinating backgrounds, and we thought it would be great for them to share some of their past experiences with young people in the community.”
Matt Williamson from Stockport School said,
The boys involved in the pen pal project have really enjoyed the process. They each wrote a thoughtful letter and shared insights about what it’s like being a teenager in this day and age. We all really enjoyed meeting Janet and her son Ian, when they came to the School to deliver her letter to her pen pal. We are looking forward to writing the next set of letters!”
Photo Caption: At Stockport School: Y7 pupils, (l-r) Matt Williamson, Ian Coxon, Stockport School Headteacher Mr Irwin, and David Moore. Janet Coxon is in the front