Last 1st December 2021, Defoin carried out the pilot testing phase of the project TSITour, financed by the Erasmus+ programme. In this event, students of the I.E.S. Príncipe Felipe of Madrid and elders of the Daily Care Centre Ilustración enjoyed a pleasant day visiting the Royal Palace of El Pardo.
The Royal Palace of El Pardo –located in the surroundings of Monte de El Pardo, outside the capital–, is a building closely related to the History of Spain, from its construction by order of Emperor Charles V in the 16th century to the present day, established as the Official Residence of Foreign Heads of State from 1983 to the present day. This place has also marked the lifes of the elderly that participated in the project, being the place of many of their most valuable memories, so this added value has been relevant to develop in here this last activity of the TSITour project.
During the visit, the participants were able to explore all the rooms inside the Palace, as well as the magnificent surrounding gardens. Once outside, the participants could tell stories related to their memories linked to the place, sharing their memories about the post Civil War period, the later dictatorship that lasted 40 years as well as presenting the nearby river Manzanares. The intervention of a local guide provided an in-depth knowledge of the history of this building and its surroundings, enriching the testimony given by the elderly, whose memories were arising as the tourist route was taking place.
But the enthusiasm for the event was not only among the elders: the VET students who had prepared the storytelling projects together with the elderly were absolutely excited and with the desire to continue learning from the elders.
The visit to the Royal Palace of El Pardo was a marvellous end to two months of work by all the participants, both elders and youngsters; an activity awaited with great enthusiasm and great expectations. With a very positive and satisfactory result for all of them, both the students and the elders assured that they had enjoyed the experience enormously, all of them agreeing that the explanation of our History is enriched by including personal stories of those who have lived it.