Activities that bring young and old together revive a social arrangement that was taken for granted in the past and is still important in many traditional cultures. Bringing old and young together promotes mutual care, transmits cultural values, and enriches the lives of everyone involved.
Some projects bring seniors and children together to focus on a community problem. In one project, high school students and seniors shared their experience of alcohol and substance abuse.
In some cities a Volunteer Grandparents Society matches children aged 3 to 12 who have no grandparent with volunteer grandparents, creating extended families that see each other regularly and participate in group events and outings.
An oral history project is another way of bringing seniors and young people together. Typically, young people locate, record, and edit stories and reminiscences of the elderly. They deposit the edited recordings in the public library, where they become an archive of local history.
More information on intergenerational programs.
Community Building Activities / Part 2-11
The Citizen's Handbook / Charles Dobson / www.vcn.bc.ca/citizens-handbook