The United Nations Principle for Older Persons of Self-fulfilment states that ‘Older persons should be able to pursue opportunities for the full development of their potential [and]... have access to the educational, cultural, spiritual and recreational resources of society.
With that aim in mind, McAuley Place has planning permisison to renovate and extend the original derelict convent building, dating back to the mid 1800s, to provide a Health through Learning Centre. This will become the heart of our housing development for Older Persons and will play a huge part in community integration. It will showcase how invaluable the arts are to enhance the well being of an entire community and show how life long learning is as valuable to the health of the community as to the wellbeing of the individual.
The McAuley Place Health through Learning Centre will be a place where people can drop in to discover, observe, sample, or engage in a range of activities. It will not be restricted to a specific age group or category of people: young, old, and anyone in-between will be welcome. The activities will not be restricted to a fixed schedule: some may take place over an afternoon, others may last for the duration of an artist’s residency. There will be no obligation to ‘get involved’: the lobby and garden will be places where people can simply sit, chat, read, knit, paint, daydream...
There will be a ‘lobby’ – an informal place to relax or meet, three areas for creative pursuits, accommodation for an artist-in-residence, and an interactive garden.