December 16, 2017

Grab life with both hands | Celebrating the creativity of older generations #Winter #Warmers


Late last year filmmaker Duncan Cowles helped some of our care home residents to make short films for creative ageing festival Luminate. The festival aims to bring people together to celebrate the creativity of older generations, by sharing stories of ageing and exploring what growing older means to all of us.

Meet Margaret

Margaret Henderson a resident at North Merchiston Care Home in Edinburgh participated in the film project together with four other residents from our home.

Director Duncan Cowles, encouraged our residents to take control of their own filming day and the naming of their creations, producing a final film that they’d be proud of.

Margaret shared some wise words; when asked by Duncan what she thought the film should focus on Margaret simply stated: “Just enjoy life… enjoy life, grab it with both hands.”

As well as this sound advice, Margaret discusses the happiest moments in her life, one of which was meeting her husband Bill for the first time – it was definitely love at first sight. The full result of Margaret and Duncan’s video can be seen here.

Mike Heard, Home Manager, said: “Margaret and the other residents who took part in this project really enjoyed themselves. It was their chance to ‘get to grips’ with modern technology whilst sharing their stories to a wider audience. Duncan’s videos are an insight into some of the colourful characters we have here at North Merchiston. I hope you enjoy watching them as much as the residents enjoyed making them.

“Margaret sadly passed away before the film aired to a wider audience, but she did see the final product before she passed. Her wise words will continue to ring true with everyone who watches the film.”

Supporting creativity at all ages

In an interview with the Sunday Post Duncan explains why this project is important to him:

“As the population continues to age, I think it’s becoming more and more important to think creatively about the ageing process and make sure that there are projects in place that cater to older generations. This is one of the reasons why Luminate Festival is so uniquely important – its mission is to celebrate creativity at any age.

“Many older people ultimately end up in care homes, so I wanted to do something a bit different that would make a positive impact on participants’ lives. People can be creative at any age and it’s important that they’re given an outlet. One of the residents I worked with, Edith, talked to me the other day about how she wasn’t given the opportunity to do all the things she might’ve wanted to experience in her life and she had really enjoyed doing something new – by making a film together.

“One day it could be me sitting in a care home in the later years of my life, looking for activities to occupy my time. I hope someone still takes an interest in my life and gives me the chance to be creative.”

More information

To view all of our residents’ wonderful projects click here

To view Duncan’s interview with the Sunday Post regarding the project click here

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