As Bonfire Night approaches, remember to think about older people in your local community.
“At this time of year, older people tell us that they are often frightened by the bangs and crashes created by fireworks,” says KiB’s Jill Fraser. “The sudden noise and explosions of light can be terrifying. This is especially true for those living with dementia, veterans, and people who remember the horrors of war.”
The answer is for families and communities to talk about bonfire night with their older relatives and neighbours, so they are expecting it and can connect it to happy memories.
“As communities, we can bond over memories of bonfire night, and use it as a trigger for happy reminiscences,” says Fraser. “Encourage young people to ask about bonfire night in old days – did families have bonfires in their gardens? How much did fireworks cost? The older people will enjoy sharing their memories and the young ones will get a fascinating glimpse into times gone by.”
We should start these conversations as soon as possible, says Fraser: “People start setting off fireworks in October nowadays. It’s not just one night a year anymore.”