Bonding with memory boxes

Pictured with their newly completed 'memory boxes', part of  an intergenerational project at 1st Lurgan Brownies are from left, Jemma Whiteside, Heather Whiteside, Carol Cleland, Sarah O'Connor, Carly Farry and Grace Farry.INPT20-202.
Pictured with their newly completed 'memory boxes', part of an intergenerational project at 1st Lurgan Brownies are from left, Jemma Whiteside, Heather Whiteside, Carol Cleland, Sarah O'Connor, Carly Farry and Grace Farry.INPT20-202.

There was plenty of fun and excitement for First Lurgan Brownies over the past few weeks as they worked with older members of the community on a Memory Box project. The ‘Celebrating Age’ scheme was specially designed to bring the generations together to share memories and create new ones.

The Brownies invited family members and friends to join with them in painting and decorating wooden memory boxes which can be used to hold precious mementos and stories from the past.

As part of their time together they decorated wall plaques and small clothes hangers and also recorded their special memories on purposely designed booklets.

Mrs Ann Harrison, grandmother of one of the Brownies said: “I have thoroughly enjoyed the whole project. It has been great to be able to spend quality time with my grand-daughter Poppy.

“We loved painting and decorating our own memory box together and for me having the opportunity to record some special memories that I would like Poppy to hold onto when she grows up, was lovely.”

The scheme was funded through FACT and the Linking Generations Northern Ireland ‘Celebrating Age’ scheme which is supported by the Public Health Agency.

Yvonne Breen, FACT Armagh Project Officer, who organised the project said, “It has been a pleasure to work with the First Lurgan Brownies to bring this intergenerational project to life.

“Not only has the project allowed the girls to spend quality time with their grandparents and family friends to develop their memory boxes, it has provided a new outlet for older people to meet each other and develop new friendships.

“It is important that our older citizens feel valued and so I feel this project has contributed in a small way towards this, here in Lurgan.”

The FACT Project (Fermanagh Armagh Connected Together) is a partnership initiative between South East Fermanagh Foundation and County Armagh Phoenix Group and is funded by the Big Lottery Fund under the Reaching out Connecting Older People Scheme. The FACT project provides community based services for people over the age of 60 who live in Counties Fermanagh and Armagh with the aim of reducing loneliness and isolation.

All details of FACT activities are included in the FACT newsletter, which is available by registering with Yvonne Breen on 07711 590 772 or at ybreen.fact@gmail.com