Creating opportunities for conversation and connection
Abbeyfield Week is an annual event in which we invite our residents, staff, trustees, volunteers and friends to celebrate all things Abbeyfield with us, and focus on what makes our houses and homes unique.
Our theme this year was Creating Conversations. Abbeyfield residents have been fortunate to experience the sense of community, companionship and support that makes living with us so special, over what has been a particularly tough year. We wanted to use Abbeyfield Week to bring everyone together and create opportunities for conversation and connection with one another, demonstrating what we do best.
Our creative writing competition prompted people to express their creativity around a range of subjects. We asked them to identify their favourite person at Abbeyfield; tell us why mealtimes matter at Abbeyfield; write a review of the food; let us know what they would say about Abbeyfield if they had the attention of the world for five minutes; and say who in the world they would most like to have a conversation with and why. We had a great variety of entries from residents, staff and volunteers – even some from our international Member Societies – including short stories, poems, letters and songs, and we’ll be sharing the winners with you very shortly.
We also introduced two unique activities. Our Conversation Starters activity encouraged our residents and staff to think about what makes Abbeyfield special for them, and to write their thoughts on a selection of templates. We had some lovely responses, with some houses bringing all of them together to create a beautiful displays.
Tea & Memories
We also launched Tea & Memories, a new campaign encouraging residents to get together and reminisce. Courtesy of Living Memories CIC, we were able to provide a great range of DVD and online archive footage from the 1940s-1970s, to trigger memories and conversation about previous years gone by. Residents showed great engagement in these sessions and spoke about their jobs, home lifestyle and holidays, sharing anecdotes from their lives before Abbeyfield.
Highlights of the Week
Check out our highlights of the week in the video below. Don’t forget to check back with us soon to see the winners of the creative writing competition! Thank you to our volunteer, Tom Jeffreys, who edited this film together for us.