Special Valentine’s Day event for Sunderland pensioners

Ethel Donkin (92) is served wine at the Over 60s Valentines meal held in Academy 360 by student Chloe Johnstone (16). Picture by FRANK REID

Ethel Donkin (92) is served wine at the Over 60s Valentines meal held in Academy 360 by student Chloe Johnstone (16). Picture by FRANK REID

0
Have your say

Love was all around at a Wearside school when pupils helped pensioners celebrate Valentine’s Day.

Young people from Academy 360 pulled out all the stops to show their love for the over-60s in their community by hosting a special party.

BrianGriffiths is served his soup by student David Collins (16) at the Over 60s Valentines meal held in Academy 360. Picture by FRANK REID

BrianGriffiths is served his soup by student David Collins (16) at the Over 60s Valentines meal held in Academy 360. Picture by FRANK REID

The Year 10 and 11 students made it an evening to remember for all those who took part in the Valentine event.

Jill Dawson, adult, family and community manager at the Pennywell school, who co-ordinated the night, said the young people had put a lot of work into it.

Year 10 students cooked a three-course meal as part of their catering studies and Year 11 students acted as waiters to the 70 guests who went along to enjoy the party.

Pensioners were also treated to wine and a game of bingo.

John McGuinness, the principal at Academy 360, came up with the idea for the Valentine’s evening to get everyone together.

He said: “Our inaugural Over-60s Valentine’s Meal signals to the community the commitment to working in partnership.

“It will be an annual event, which brings together two groups of the community who wouldn’t normally spend a great deal of time with each other.

“The event gave opportunities for our Year 10 students to work in hospitality and Year 11 students to develop leadership skills, acting as waiters and entertainers.

“It was an uplifting evening for all involved.”

The principal said the evening was part of an ongoing community strategy, which launches in September with the opening of a new Community Suite, which will initially run the adult and family programme.

Mr McGuinness, said: “Schools need to be inward and outward thinking, our community needs to feel they have a relationship with Academy 360.

“Current sponsors Gentoo and Sir Bob Murray will be thrilled to see community spirit is alive and well.”

l Ways to mark Valentine’s Day – Pages 14 & 15