Talented young artists brighten the lives of care home residents


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The work of a group of talented young artists will help brighten the lives of care home residents.

The Wrexham-based Pendine Park care organisation staged an art competition for children related to residents, their families or staff – and the results were stunning.

So much so, that artist-in-residence Sarah Edwards is putting on a virtual online exhibition with their pictures taking pride of place.

According to Sarah, the Covid-19 lockdown had been difficult for everyone including young people and she wanted to give them an art challenge to help keep them engaged.

Jeri Alyson Azarcon, 14, whose mum and two sisters work at the Bodlondeb Care Home, was voted  clear winner and receive a £40 Amazon voucher and a certificate

The runners up were Ava Royce, four, whose mum works in the  pay roll department and Wil Edwards, eight, who is coincidentally Sarah’s nephew. Both of them received a £20 Amazon voucher and a certificate

She said: “I wanted to make this an intergenerational project so younger people felt engaged and involved with our care homes and residents.

“We had 48 entries from children aged one up to 17. All the entries were displayed on our Facebook page and people could vote for their favourite.

“We had more than 2,200 votes with the winner and two runners up, who received the most votes, winning prizes.

“Well done to the winner, the runners up and to everyone who took part. We had some lovely art work and there are clearly some very talented young artists out there.

“The standard of art work was amazingly high, we really did have some fabulous entries and we are putting them on our Facebook page so they can continue to brighten the lives of our residents.”

Winning artist Jeri Alyson Azarcon, a student at St Joseph’s High School, Wrexham, made a collage of her favourite things.

She said: “I tried to include lots of things that make me happy such as dancing, rabbits, rainbows, the flag of my native Philippines, architecture and money. I was really pleased to win.

“My dream is to become an engineer. I have two sisters, who are both studying nursing, and my mum works at Pendine Park but I want to do something different.”

Jeri Alyson’s mum, Olga, who has worked as a nurse at Bodlondeb since 2011, said: “I started out as a care practitioner then qualified as a nurse. I work with my other two daughters, Jayme, 23, and Jo Margarette, 21, at Bodlondeb.

“The art competition was a great idea and Jeri Alyson spent a lot of time completing her art work entry. It was a good idea involving young people especially after the Covid-19 health crisis.”

Ava Royce’s mum, Sarah, says her daughter spent a lot of tome producing her drawing of a mermaid for the competition.

She said: “I’m so pleased for her to win a £20 Amazon voucher for her efforts. It means a lot and I’m sure she will want to buy something mermaid themed. She is obsessed with mermaids at the moment.

“The competition was a lovely idea and to be runner up from so many entries is amazing. I’m just so pleased so many people voted for Ava’s picture.”

Ava, four, who attends Ysgol ID Hooson, in Rhos, said: “I love mermaids and the Little Mermaid is my favourite film. I liked drawing the picture and winning a prize.”

Wil Edwards, a pupil of Ysgol Plas Coch, in Wrexham, was equally delighted to claim a £20 Amazon voucher with his picture of a kingfisher.

He  said: “I see kingfishers in Moss Valley near where I live. I love them as they are so colourful and I enjoyed drawing my picture.”

Mum Jane Edwards said: “It was a lovely competition and I’m just grateful to everyone who voted for Wil’s picture. He’s so proud.

“It’s been a real challenge under lockdown to keep children occupied so this art competition has been great way to get children involved.”

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