often unfold organically, as children
walk through the hallways or peer in
fascination at seniors getting their hair
done or hop a ride on a visiting donkey.
“The residents just love to see children
With funding from Age Friendly
Edmonton, the Edmonton Public
Library drew seniors and teens
together to create themed memory
kits containing items from decades
back and recent years. Librarians are
using the “then and now” kits to spark
conversations about cooking, fashion,
toys, school and music.
As the generations swap tales about
artifacts in the kits, they fill the room
with chatter and energy. “Both seniors
and youth experience isolation and
prejudice,” says community services
librarian Kate Charuk, who started the
project with youth services librarian
Jennifer Waters. “Both benefit from doing
The very act of creating the kits
challenged stereotypes. “When they told
us what they had gone through, what
they’d built, how they improved their
lives and our lives, I see it all differently,”
says one student.
He now makes a point of visiting with
his older neighbours, whom he’d never
even noticed before. As he puts it, “They
have a lot of cool stories to tell.” |a
MATCHING SENIORS AND YOUTH
Find out more about resources and
programs in Alberta and beyond.
Age Friendly Edmonton’s
Intergenerational Programming Toolkit.
Go to edmonton.ca and search
AgeCare in Calgary
LINKages in Calgary
Linking Generations in Sherwood Park