Multigeneration art exchange program helps Goodstart Merriwa stay connected

Multigeneration art exchange program helps Goodstart Merriwa stay connected

by Freya Lucas

September 08, 2020

A weekly art exchange between RAAFA Estate Merriwa and Goodstart Early Learning Merriwa is helping Merriwa residents of all ages to maintain their sense of connection in the face of COVID-19 challenges and restrictions of face-to-face interactions. 


The Little Hands Art Exchange has been established to swap artwork created by kindergarten  children and retirees, and began when the children sent artwork to the estate to put on display in the arcade. 


Residents wanted to return the favour, volunteering to create artwork to display at Goodstart Merriwa, with RAAFA retirement wellbeing officer Suzanne Free making sure a new piece of art was delivered to the service each week. 


Before the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic, each site was interested in establishing an intergenerational playgroup, which is now on hold. 


To keep spirits up while waiting for the restrictions to lift, staff from Goodstart suggested the exchange become reciprocal once again. 


Works shared by RAAFA Estate residents include paintings, woodwork, modelling and craft, with a picture and brief summary of the person who created the work.


It’s this element, Ms Free told local publication Perth Now which is creating a sense of connection between the creator and the viewer, and which builds a rapport between both sites. 


To read this story in Perth Now, and to view pictures of the art, please see here.