Give Back to Lapland last visiting day 29.4 in Ylitornio

This is it – the last day of our senior citizen units visiting tour around Lapland! This time we went to Ylitornio to organize activities for elderly in Ylitornion palvelukoti and Palvelukoti Lantonvainio. Aaron Celeste from Tornio drove first to Rovaniemi to pick us up (Irina Sergeeva, Milla Sandholm and Nina Niskala). Even though Aaron didn’t know Rovaniemi that well, everything went smoothly and we managed to set out to Ylitornio on time.

Since this was indeed the last day of our visits, everyone felt little bit tired, and to break the ice and wake everyone up, we sang some songs in the car too which turned out a great way to raise the team spirit!

So, first up was Ylitornion palvelukoti, which we managed to find quite easily since Ylitornio is that large area. There we performed twice in different departments, so our program was little bit shorther this time. We sang together Olen Suomalainen and Täällä Pohjantähden alla, like in other units aswell. And then as a surprise for them, Aaron sans gong called ”Wagon Wheel” by Bob Dylan in English without any background music – everyone liked it even though most of them coudln’t understand a word. Before we headed out to the next department in that building, we gave everyone chocolates and greeted them goodbye – hopefully we can meet again someday! Next department was pretty much a repetition to that one we did just before. Again it was really nice to see their happy reactions.

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Then we had time for longer break so we drove to the yard of the place – Palvelukoti Lantonvainio – and we ate some snacks. Again it was time for some music – Aaron played us another song called ”Welcome Home” by Rehab, and even though we didn’t know this song either beforehand, somehow we ended up still singing it together.

Then it was time to start our performance in the last place Palvelukoti Lantonvainio. We were greeted by really friendly staff and senior citizens, so we knew this was going to be great time with them!

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After our performance the workers were kind enough to offer us coffee and home-baked donughts, those were delicious! At the coffee table we also had a nice chat with them about this project, and life in general. We also shared our idea to develop this project and continue it in some form also next semester.

On our way back there was finally time to talk about the afterparty of this project, because after such tough and busy two weeks, we felt like we needed to celebrate it! We also talked about our future plans and our eagerness to participate in this project in the future too.

Thank you everyone and see you next semester!

Authors: Aaron Celeste and Nina Niskala