Cum Ageen dus Welcome


Nesting Primary School recognised the need to actively link older and younger people together, and with the help of Northaven Care Centre set up the following intergenerational project. There have always been strong intergenerational links in traditional Shetland communities, however due to the new Nesting Primary School being built outside their village rather than in the heart, care workers in the community and at Northaven Daycare recognised that the older people were isolated from younger people and vice-versa.

• Increase interaction between pupils and older people
• Decrease isolation of older people on isolated crofts
• Pupils to learn about Nesting’s past from older people
• Decrease anxiety of sheltered housing occupants in relation to pupils
• Meet curriculum objectives in relation to health & well-being
• Meet curriculum objectives in relation listening and talking
• Meet curriculum objectives on performance.

All 22 pupils (aged 5 – 11) are involved in visiting older people every four weeks throughout the school session. There are 10 clients (aged 66 – 81) referred by the care centre or community care workers.


  • The pupils make, bake and grow gifts for the older people (a great way of breaking down the barriers when they first go and visit)
  • The pupils and staff run a second-hand bookstall so the older people can be supported with reading materials
  • The more able older people are invited to many school events
  • The school took part in a community appeal to run a Christmas Advent Service, which many of the older people attended
  • Pupils perform at the older people’s Christmas lunch
  • The school also accepts recycled material from the clients and encourages gardening
  • The older people pass down gardening and knitting techniques and share their knowledge of social history through the sharing of stories

The main driver in the project is the Classroom Assistant and the project could not happen without her commitment.

Benefits for the Community

  • Reducing isolation for many older people
  • Building relationships between older and younger people

Creating Community is central to the role of the school

Benefits for the Younger People

Successful Learners

  • Openness to new thinking and ideas
  • Use communication skills
  • Use technology for learning
  • Learn as part of a group

Confident individuals

  • Self-respect
  • A sense of physical, mental and emotional well being
  • Relate to others
  • Pursue a healthy lifestyle
  • Communicate their own beliefs
  • Live as independently as they can
  • Secure values and beliefs
  • Achieve success in different areas of activity

Responsible Citizens

  • Respect for others
  • Commitment to participate in social and cultural events.

Effective contributors

  • Self-reliance
  • Communicate in different ways and in different settings
  • Enterprising attitude
  • Create and develop
  • Work in partnership

Benefits for the Older People

  • Openness to new thinking and ideas
  • Self-respect
  • A sense of physical, mental and emotional wellbeing
  • Pursue a healthy lifestyle
  • Communicate their own beliefs
  • Live as independently as they can
  • Respect for younger people
  • Commitment to participate in social and cultural events.
  • Self-reliance
  • Communicate in different ways and in different settings, learning new skills


The school funded this project.


We have no formal evaluation however respond to informal feedback from the community.

The project works very well and there were no barriers, however to keep it sustainable, funding for transport and materials will need to be secured.

Visits are shared via the school facebook page.

What changed as a result of the project?

• Pupils’ understanding of their older neighbours and their lifestyle changed.
• Increased sense of community
• A greater respect between both groups.
• A more positive response from all members of the community towards the school.

Next Steps

We are going to continue and develop this project after consulting with care workers.

This project contributes to the Scottish National Performance Framework (NPF)

Scottish NPF Objectives

The main NPF objectives that this project contributes to are:

  • Smarter will focus on improving literacy, numeracy and attainment and on raising and realising ambition for all.
  • Healthier will enable people to live longer and healthier lives

These NPF objectives could also apply:

  • Safer and Stronger aims to help local communities to flourish and become stronger, safer places to live.

Scottish NPF Outcomes

Our young people are successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors and responsible citizens: To enable children, young people and (subsequently) adults to thrive from an early age, and make a positive contribution in the 21st century.

We live longer, healthier lives: Securing longer healthier lives for the people of Scotland will always be a top priority for governments and individuals alike. There are significant challenges which can only be addressed by everyone in Scotland working together, pursuing this goal through improving lifestyles and life circumstances, and a shared ownership of an effective NHS.

Our people are able to maintain their independence as they get older, and are able to access appropriate support when they need it: Providing high quality care and support to an ageing population is a fundamental principle of social justice and is an important hallmark of a caring and compassionate society. Collectively we need to give priority to ensuring that older people receive the care, compassion, support and dignity they need and deserve.

We have strong, resilient and supportive communities where people take responsibility for their own actions and how they affect others: Being part of a strong community gives us the support we need locally. It minimises crime, antisocial behaviour and their social and economic costs.