Once a week for 10 weeks, students are meeting with their resident and collecting dialogue about their lives; using the online Bookform program to interview and capture stories.
Bookform uses voice-to-text technology, structures the chapters and pieces the book together with images.
Kings School are working with residents from Arcare Oatlands and students from Tangara School for Girls are working with Arcare Glenhaven.
This project has been a true advocate for Arcare’s community approach, as it has fostered very meaningful relationships for residents.
Residents have such a rich history to be recognised, each unique to their own and so very different to the lifetime we live now.
Not only has this project allowed students and residents to develop such special relationships over the weeks, but NSW Arcare residences now share great new community connections.
Sharing their stories with the students has given the residents a great sense of purpose and continuity.
Their life stories are educating young students of a lifetime unlike any they could imagine, and the students are recording stories that otherwise may have never made it to paper.
‘The residents absolutely love their time with the students and always anticipating their next session,’ said Community Marketing Officer Rachel Aquilina.
‘It’s lovely to meet the students and it’s nice to go back through my life – it makes me think about it again,’ said resident Elaine Middleton, Glenhaven.
‘The boys are an absolutely credit to their school,’ said Harry Gee, Oatlands.
Students have been amazed by residents’ lives and are sharing their stories with their friends back at school.
‘I want to go and sit with Hannah to hear Rudi’s stories – I’m jealous she gets to hear them!’ said Tangara student Angela Diab.
‘Everyone at school waits for me to come and tell them the new stories I’ve heard from Rudi, they think it’s so interesting,’ said Tangara student Hannah Sakr.
‘I could tell from watching Oliver work with Dad that these boys aren’t just sitting there writing,’ said Harry’s daughter Wendy, ‘They’ve formed real relationships.’
‘To kids these days, parents aren’t cool. Older people aren’t cool. But these boys are seeing a different side to that.’
‘I think it’s such a wonderful program; a marvelous idea for these boys to learn about our childhood and how we were brought up,’ said resident Harry.
At the end of the project students will be handing over a book of stories for the residents and their families to keep for generations to come.
The project has already exceeded expectations and has been such a rewarding experience for everyone involved.
The relationships flourishing, legacies being noted stories and being shared between two very different generations has been so beautiful to watch.
We all look forward to the final presentation of the books to the residents in a couple of months time.