Residents of Buckingham’s Hamilton House care home had a Valentine’s Day treat when students from the University of Buckingham visited them with Valentine’s cards, roses, cake and chocolates.
The idea came from law student Adebayo Razak, who is founder and president of the university’s Africa Society.
Eighteen, mainly African, students spent the afternoon with residents. As well as taking roses and treats, they read a poem and a story, played music, including Frank Sinatra, Whitney Houston, Marvin Gaye and Ben E. King, and danced with the old ladies.
Activities manager Sarah Picketts said: “It was amazing. It just lived way above their expectations. I was just speechless for them. The old ladies were just so emotional and they never stop talking about it. They absolutely loved it.
“The residents were on such a high when they’d finished, it was hard to bring them back down. One lady wouldn’t put her rose down.
“I told them they’re welcome to come back any time.”
Mr Razak, aged 30, said it was an emotional experience for the students as well as the elderly people.
He said: “We had a very warm reception. We had a lot of hugs, we had a lot of kisses. they were very welcoming, very loving. We see them as our new friends. One of the ladies told me this was one of the best times she’d had in her life.
“It was not just the act of taking roses and cake and chocolates. I felt the elderly and the young people were able to connect in heart.
“As international students coming all the way from Africa, Buckingham has embraced us and I don’t think there’s anything better we can give back to society than the commitment of love and care.
“We’ll definitely go back there.”