This week, as we approach the festive holiday, we have had a reflection week revisiting our plans for the intergenerational nursery. We have also been able to walk around the nursery space again with the contractors to think about fixtures, fittings and signage.
The space is looking fabulous with natural light flooding in from every angle. This made us think carefully about the types of blinds we need to enable us to control light levels throughout the day and changing seasons. We had a great debate about this, involving a range of professionals with a range of different perspectives! The learning from each other was rich and the challenge of multi-perspectives was incredibly valuable.
In revisiting our signage plans, we also had to think carefully about instructional signage that works for older people as well as children and families, particularly significant for those that may be living with dementia or some other cognitive impairment. This resulted in us rethinking our initial plans and removing the life size photographic images we were going to use in our welcome areas which could be confusing and disorienting for some older people.
Over two sessions we have also returned to our initial scoping plans and some of the assumptions we made when we started out on this multigenerational journey. We have learnt so much over the last year, particularly as the pandemic has progressed and impacted so seriously on our ways of connecting with each other. This has been hugely significant for people living in assisted care facilities and particularly our older, most vulnerable groups and goes to the heart of understanding equity and inclusion and what adds to feelings of marginalisation. This has resulted in us giving much greater consideration to the use of assistive technology and voice intelligent devices such as Alexa.
So here are some of the questions we have worked on together over the week and have used to update our planning:
- Does all current planning demonstrate our fundamental commitment to putting people first using our simple three design principles?
- What are the facts, assumptions and limitations evident in our planning that don’t serve us well as we move forwards i.e. does our planning align with our recent learning and the dynamic ambition of our vision?
- What are the current problems and issues we are trying to resolve and do they actually present us with any new opportunities we just hadn’t spotted?
- What are the enduring features in our designs that we must protect at all costs?
- Are there any new skills that we need to develop or bring into our organisation to implement our plans successfully i.e. systems thinking, community building, inclusion of marginalised groups?
- How will this all end? What do we need to do to plan and think beyond this present uncertainty to maximise our chances of creating something that is both amazing and sustainable?
We hope these may be useful for you to use and adapt to suit your strategic and operational visioning and reflections. Happy planning and learning!