“Connections between generations are essential for the mental health and stability of a nation. A society that cuts off from its youth severs its lifeline; but a society that engages in a deep and respectful conversation across generations is enriched and enlivened.”Margaret Mead
In an era where the gap between generations appears to be ever-expanding, fostering connections between older adults and younger generations presents a host of rewarding opportunities. Such interactions not only fill our older population with a renewed sense of purpose, but they also pave the way for engaging, meaningful community involvement.
In 2021, Oryx Communities launched a co-located intergenerational partnership which was the first of its kind in Western Australia. The implementation of these intergenerational programs at both The Richardson and The Queenslea has been a rewarding an enriching experience for both our residents, and our young friends.
Intergenerational programs see our participants engage regularly through collaborative art and craft sessions, playing a game of chess or even technology workshops where the young can assist residents to navigate the ever-changing digital landscape. Such programs do more than just impart skills; they create bonds and a mutual appreciation and understanding between the ages.
Oryx Communities provides opportunities for all of our residents, in both our aged care residences and retirement communities, to regularly engage in these programs. However, if you or your loved one are living in the wider community here are some ideas to embrace this initiative:
Sharing Wisdom Across Generations
The reservoir of knowledge and skills that older adults possess is a treasure trove for the younger generation. Hosting workshops or casual classes in areas like cooking, sewing, or woodworking not only can engage young individuals, but also facilitates an exchange of stories and life lessons. These interactions foster a rich, shared heritage and wisdom, strengthening community bonds.
Active Participation in Community Life
Engaging in community events — from local festivals and charity drives to community theatre brings individuals together across the age spectrum. Such active participation not only enriches the social lives of older adults but also anchors them at the core of the community’s vibrancy and energy.
VOLUNTEERING: A PATHWAY TO YOUTHFUL ENGAGEMENT
For seniors, volunteering emerges as a dynamic avenue to connect with the youth. Diverse opportunities exist, from aiding in classrooms or libraries at local schools to mentoring in youth programs, where their wisdom can profoundly impact young lives. Hospitals, too, provide volunteering roles, allowing older adults to interact with young families and patients, offering comfort and empathy in challenging times.
Bridging the Digital Divide
In today’s technology-driven world, connecting with younger generations increasingly involves becoming tech-savvy. Platforms like social media, video calls and various online forums offer seniors avenues to maintain familial bonds and connect with younger individuals sharing similar interests.
Fostering connections with the younger generation opens a gateway to a world filled with mutual learning, sharing and understanding, benefiting both sides of the age spectrum. At The Richardson and The Queenslea, such interactions are not just organised – they are celebrated, highlighting the richness and joy that intergenerational relationships bring to our community.
From your friends at Oryx
The Richardson Aged Care Phone (08) 9381 2800
The Queenslea Aged Care Phone (08) 6280 1900
The Queenslea Retirement Living Apartments Phone (08) 6280 1999