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Recognising the benefits of intergenerational interaction, MHA Reuben Manor care home in Stockton-on-Tees invited 11-year-old William Holden into the home to transport residents back 96 million years to the Jurassic Age.

Equipped with his collection of dinosaur memorabilia and fossils, palaeontology enthusiast William captivated residents with his impressive knowledge and insight – and, of course, letting them get hands on with the sculptures and fossils. The exhibition was followed by a screening of Jurassic Park to celebrate 25 years of its release.

Speaking about William’s presentation, Reuben Manor Activity Coordinator Samantha Holden said: “The residents at Reuben Manor loved learning about dinosaurs and one resident couldn't stop talking about the size of the t-rex tooth William showed them.

“Another resident was fascinated to find out that lots of dinosaurs have been discovered in Britain including the Baryonyx, of which William showed them a thumb claw. It was amazing to see the residents learn so much from someone so young!

“William can often be fairly shy, but this just proves that if you're passionate about something, your confidence will come from that.”

William’s attraction to palaeontology stems from fossil hunting at Runswick Bay with his grandad and travelling up and down the country visiting museum and university collections. He's even had the privilege of meeting some of the country’s top palaeontologists including Dean Lomax and Steve Etches MBE.

The importance of intergenerational care was highlighted in a recent study that suggests older people who experienced close intergenerational interaction are less prone to depression and have better physical health, as well as being happier with their present life and more hopeful for the future. (University of Kent, 2017)

MHA is proud to offer a wonderful programme of varied and unique activities at all of its care homes across the UK. Learn more about life in an MHA care home >>

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