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Back to School for 79-year-old Violet

As students return to their studies for the start of another school year, joining them is 79-year-old Violet as she proves that age really is just a number by embarking on her own challenge to achieve her dreams: learning to read again.

What’s more, in a heartening tale of generations coming together, her ambitions are being supported by new friend, Charlotte, 10, who was inspired to help when she met Violet whilst on a school trip to her home, care village Belong Crewe.

The dementia specialist had welcomed Pebble Brook Primary School pupils for their monthly meet-up, reading with those residing at the Brookhouse Drive village, with the young guests sharing their favourite stories with their elder friends to advance their proficiency whilst enjoying the social delights of intergenerational relationships.

For Violet, a bookworm since her youth, health issues in older age mean she now needs some support to indulge her beloved pastime. It was when she revealed her struggle, Charlotte offered to reverse roles and provide a helping hand to her companion.

Now, she volunteers her own time for weekly one-to-one sessions, where Charlotte and Violet spend time reading together. Speaking of her motivation, Charlotte said: “I wanted to make Violet happy as she told me she really wants to be able to read a newspaper again.

“We have a chat and a laugh between reading, and she even introduced me to her singing bird, Joey. I really like going to Belong to visit everyone; they are all lovely and I think other children should visit as I know how much it means to the residents.”

Violet commented: “Charlotte is a lovely girl; she is so patient and makes me comfortable with my reading. I feel a lot more confident and when she’s not here, I borrow books from Belong Crewe’s library to read in my apartment and I think my reading is getting much better. I’m very grateful Charlotte gives up her own time to see me.”

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