Port of Leith Housing Association welcomes First Minister to spread Christmas cheer

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon visits PoLHA's Jameson Place
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon visits PoLHA’s Jameson Place

Tenants of Port of Leith Housing Association’s (PoLHA) Jameson Place development welcomed a special guest this week when First Minister Nicola Sturgeon paid a visit to the Generations Project for their Christmas festivities.

The First Minister joined the group for the launch of Age Scotland’s winter campaign “No-One Should Have No-One at Christmas”, which aims to raise awareness of the impact of loneliness on older people and encourage people across Scotland to look out for older family, friends and neighbours this Christmas.

The Pilmeny Development Project developed the ‘Generations Project’ which targets hard to reach older people and carers in the Leith area. The group brings together older people, carers and young people, to support and learn from one another through shared activities and the learning of new skills and tacking social isolation in the local community.

After chatting with tenants and S1 pupils from Drummond High School (who are part of the Generations Project) and participating in a round of pass-the-parcel, the First Minister presented the young people in the group with certificates in recognition for their work with older people as part of the ‘Community & Older People’ element of the Junior Award Scheme for Schools (JASS).

PoLHA tenant Kathleen Waldman also gifted the First Minister with a tea set created by residents at Jameson Place to mark the occasion.

Keith Anderson, chief executive at PoLHA, said: “PoLHA is committed to ensuring that we build and support a strong community in Leith and North Edinburgh. A key element of this is working with the Pilmeny Project and local schools to encourage intergenerational activities for our residents and younger people to enjoy and gain benefit.

“We were delighted to welcome the First Minister to our festive celebrations to see first-hand the real difference this group and others like it make to tackle problems of social isolation. We offer our wholehearted backing for Age Scotland’s ‘No-One Should Have No-One at Christmas’ campaign.”

Maureen Tait, sheltered housing services manager at PoLHA, said: “Our tenants at Jameson Place and across our sheltered housing complexes very clearly enjoy participating in the Generations Project. Intergenerational support groups like those run by the Pilmeny Development Project help us build a stronger sense of community and enable us to prevent and address loneliness among older members.”

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