ENJOYABLE VISIT: Monogorilby State School students Cooper Bradshaw and Riley Knudsen reading with Coonambula Lodge resident Grace Taylor.
ENJOYABLE VISIT: Monogorilby State School students Cooper Bradshaw and Riley Knudsen reading with Coonambula Lodge resident Grace Taylor. Alex Treacy

Young students bring laughter to elderly

LAUGHTER is the best medicine, so the saying goes.

At Mundubbera Hospital's Coonambula Lodge yesterday, residents had a hearty dose as Monogorilby State School's seven students arrived armed with Where's Wally books, board games and a guitar for singing.

And it was all their idea.

When the students were asked to fill out a survey, they answered resoundingly in favour of more community engagement for the school, and now it's hoped these visits might occur twice a term.

Student Tom Weier said he was happy to be at the lodge because "we don't spend much time with strangers”.

Classmate Finley Reading backed him up, saying it was fun to make new friends.

The fact they get to take the morning off classes helps too, but they are also learning lessons just as important as any taught in the classroom.

Resident Jack Endre said he enjoyed the visit and wished it to be even longer next time.

"I think it is a great idea for them to visit, for both us and them,” he said.

"I like associating with young children, it makes me feel worthwhile that they want to talk to old people.

"It gives the children an idea of what old people are about.”

Principal Joanna Vidler said the school's enthusiasm for the trip showed they're aware of the importance of looking after the elderly in the community.

"We encourage them to understand the elderly can offer a lot and are not to be feared,” she said.

Director of Nursing Jan-Adele Hotz said visits such as these were vital to the mental well-being of the lodge's residents.

"I can't stress enough how important it is for our residents to have this interaction with these younger people,” she said.


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