5 Important Notes on Intergenerational Programs

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5 Important Notes on Intergenerational Programs

Posted on October 23, 2012

In society a natural gap in understanding can be seen between generations. This gap can be seen among parents and children, children and adults, and even grandparents and children. Finding connections between these generations is something that will reap benefits in all generations.

Accomplishing the breakdown of barriers that naturally cause age segregation can be done by providing programs to assist generations in better understanding one another. In doing so, one generation can form connections and enhance intergenerational relationships by using strengths from one generation to assist the other.

Elderly for example, have the opportunity to teach youth how to enhance their social skills, increase stability, through being positive role models, strengthen the sense of community and strengthen social responsibility. As it is often seen, the benefits that the youth see in result of intergenerational programs are often times more apparent than the results seen by the elderly.

Take a look at some of the benefits that the elderly can reap through these great programs:

Enhances Socialization:

Increased interaction with youth and children can assist in preventing feelings of isolation and offer different forms of socialization.


Offers Learning Opportunities:

Youth and younger adults can assist in teaching older adults up to date with modern technologies, and help teach them new innovations.


Offers a Sense of Belonging:

Intergenerational programs assist elderly in feeling productive and that their views and opinions are useful within the community and in society.


Increases Emotional Support:

Programs that incorporate different generations help decrease feelings of depression and assist in increasing self esteem.


Spiritual Support:

Children offer feelings of joy and a carefree attitude that can leave elderly feeling spiritually rejuvenated.


Here are examples of program ideas that you can hold in your community to enhance the interactions and relationships between generations. Now is a great time to start, especially with the Holiday’s right around the corner!

Adopt a Grandparent Program: Have youth in the community “Adopt a Grandparent” to spend time with and even ear community service hours.

A technology Class: Have youth educate the Elderly in your community on social media networks, computers, emails, and/or cell phones.

Holiday Parade: Have community Youth participate in the Holiday Parade with some of your older adults.

Holiday Crafts and Volunteering: Have the youth participate in a craft with some of your residents than have the youth distribute the crafts to other local businesses. (Such as hospitals, animal shelters, Salvation Army)

Holiday performance: Take your residents to a local school that is hosting a holiday program or performance.

Playing board games or cards: Host an intergenerational Bingo game or tournament, play Pictionary with intergenerational teams, or even try reading and or descriptive writing programs.

The possibilities are endless!!