Pimp my zimmer! Edinburgh College students visit residential home to deliver zimmer makeovers

Access and Continuing Education (ACE) students at Edinburgh College have flexed their creative muscles to wheel out a new project at an East Lothian residential home.

Students on the College’s Steps Towards Independence Second Steps course have visited residents at Eskgreen Residential Home in Musselburgh to spruce up their zimmer frames using all manner of decorative materials. The students also created personalised plaques for the residents which will be hanged on the outside their bedroom doors.

Prior to decorating the zimmers, the students had an introductory visit to Eskgreen where they got to know the residents in order to better inform their zimmer designs in the classroom before returning to the home for Decoration Day.

The idea for the ‘Pimp my zimmer’ project came after the class had watched a BBC clip about a similar initiative and were impressed by the fact that it had helped decrease falls and increase social skills in the residents involved. The group then decided to incorporate it into their class work unit – Working with Others.

Student Annette Brash said: “I really enjoyed the visit to Eskgreen, I was paired with Nan, who was a resident at the home, and had a lovely chat with her. I decorated her zimmer and created a door plaque for her to hang outside her room.

Student Lewis Reid said: “The visit to Eskgreen was really good, I liked having the opportunity to talk to the residents as I found out we had a lot of common interests such as our love of Elvis.”

Edinburgh College Access and Continuing Education lecturer Sacha Geeson said: “This has been a wonderful project to work on with our students. They have really enjoyed coming up with their designs and spending time with the residents at Eskgreen.

“It has been heartwarming to see them at the home, spending time interacting with the residents – the smiles on the faces of all made it really worthwhile and it’s hopefully something we can do again in the future.”

Eskgreen Care home activities coordinator Susan Allison said: “I thought the zimmer project was excellent – it was great to see two groups coming together and there was a real buzz during the sessions. It can be challenging to get residents interested in activities but from the outset I knew this project was a winner as the residents absolutely loved it.”