Birthdays are always a big event here at Caring For Life, but especially those that end in a zero! This is a definite reason to really try to make the day extra special and bring on the decorations! We recently had the opportunity to plan a celebration for one of our dear beneficiaries, who would be coming into her project on her ‘zero birthday!’ This wonderful lady is registered blind, so we wanted to make and create decorations and gifts that she could ‘see’ and experience through her other senses.
It was so beautiful to see so many of the art room beneficiaries get so involved in thinking of ideas and creating such lovely things! The excitement built as the day approached and the art room became a real focussed hive of activity on the morning of the birthday!
In preparation for the lady’s arrival, two people made stunning handmade cards, as tactile as possible- cutting out each individual letter of her name and the important words ‘Happy Birthday!’
While this was happening another gentleman was completing some braille bunting, made with buttons which she could later feel and read! This was such a fun project and something we had never tried before! We used painted triangles of paper and each button was carefully stitched in place.
We also discovered that one of our other gentlemen has an amazing hidden talent- as he offered his services in wrapping the lady's gifts! The wrapping was absolutely beautifully done and finally, we were ready to welcome her! Our lovely music room neighbours came to join the fun, serenading her with a lovely version of Stevie Wonder’s iconic birthday song. The beneficiaries excitedly were able to give the ladies the cards and gifts and do the ‘braille bunting reveal!!’.
It was truly beautiful to see their excitement in bringing joy to someone else- and how they could hardly wait for her to feel what was on the cards, before shouting out ‘this is a butterfly!’ …'this is a cake with lots of candles on!’
There was such a lovely buzz in the room as more of our friends from the ALAC joined in for the celebration, cups of tea and THE most amazing cream cake made by Mark and the catering team. This joy and fun were made all the more special by the fact that we could join in and mix together, after so many birthdays in the last few years having to be celebrated at a distance. Such a blessing and hopefully a happy memory for all to treasure. Abi