Our Intergenerational Program provides the Chicago-area community with opportunities to meet and engage with its eldest members. Students, from elementary to college, gain new perspectives and share their own areas of expertise. And all while experiencing the many benefits of volunteerism!
In addition, our elders are able to share their life experiences and stories. And this increases important feelings of being recognized, remembered and valued.
Contact Christine Bertrand, Intergenerational Coordinator, to start planning an intergenerational event. Below are just a few examples of possibilities:
- Centenarian elders visit kindergarten classrooms to count to 100 together. Elders also answer student questions about growing up and growing older.
- Middle schoolers learning about poetry meet with our elders to ask questions that inspire their own poems. Later, their works are presented to elders as mementos.
- High schoolers meet with elders, learning from their advice and wisdom while gaining valuable conversation and interview skills.
- Often, schools develop long-standing relationships with Little Brothers, visiting several times during a year. As a result, students and elders form mutually beneficial intergenerational friendships.
- Visiting elders as a family is a fun, meaningful activity to enjoy together. For kids who may not have grandparents living close by or other relationships with seniors, family visiting provides valuable connections with older generations. Introducing children to volunteering when they’re young has been proven to promote healthy lifestyle, teach life skills, and promote a lifelong service ethic.