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Reading Friends

Michael's experiences

Written by Andrea O'Donnell
25 April 2019

Reading Friend Michael has been taking part in the sessions at Owen Mor Care Centre in Derry/Londonderry, and takes part in group activities and 1:1 sessions with his Reading Friend Gerry. Find out more about Michael’s experiences with Reading Friends in Northern Ireland.

Reading Friends in Northern Ireland

Verbal Arts have been managing Reading Friends in Northern Ireland since 2018, and have partnered with Older People North West to connect with groups and individuals in day centres, residential care homes, and in their own homes. We chat to Reading Friends participant Michael about his experiences of the programme.

Micheal’s story

Michael takes part in the Reading Friends Group at Owen Mor Care Centre in Derry/Londonderry in addition to 1:1 Reading Friends session with Gerry. Reading Friends caught Michael’s imagination from the beginning and he looks forward to Monday afternoons. ‘I’m happy to say that I don’t feel inhibited in either sphere’, says Michael. ‘I rather like to think that I am exercised in both those sessions.’

Michael currently reads trans-Atlantic literature, and says that it is ‘more than likely pastures untrodden for me, and that must be one of the key facets of my preference.’  We recently read The Compartment, a short story by the American writer Raymond Carver. Michael particularly enjoyed it, saying that it ‘sort of helped me soar on the gossamer wings of imagination.’

What is the best part of Reading Friends for you?

We are what we are. Happy to be thrown together. To explore issues in an open-minded sort of way keeps me happy
Reading Friends participant, Michael

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Find out more about Reading Friends in Northern Ireland. You can also register your interest to take part in the programme.

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