Inspiring Christian nursing homes in Canada: Seniors and young coming together informally is highly beneficial
My wife found a post about the benefits of putting a nursing home and kindergarten in the same place. The Lord led me to check this out, gave me strength to highlight several links and make an extract. I have sent this to all Canadian nursing homes I have found in the internet.
"From God: Seniors and young coming together informally is highly beneficial - summary
To let you hear my love and conviction for this, please hear my attached voice message.
Intergenerational beneficial interactions
The videos at the bottom ot the list let you see the blessings www.diigo.com/user/neuwirthk/?query=fellowship-seniors-infants. I have extracted for you from the highlighted snippets in the links about
Kindergarten, Childrens and Seniors or nursing home brought together or visiting each other
Or meeting in librariers for shared time
Seniors and college students
Students and elderly
Both seniors and infants are blessed by regularly coming together informally.
Watch, hug, touch the soft skin, sing songs with them, play .. joy is always within reach ... life is full ... love arises ... Also with dementia. Powerful connections. Bonds.
The kindergartners go about their lessons, crafts and play time surrounded by the seniors who live there. Some elders watch from the sidelines, others roll up their sleeves and build block towers or indulge in a reading of a storybook.
It's enough to draw Kay Maras out of her room every week. She makes the 50-metre trip down the carpeted hallway and parks her walker by the door, then watches as the children pour in with their rainbow-coloured ski jackets and Tinkerbell lunch boxes.
It took months of physical therapy for her to build up enough strength in her 84-year-old legs for the walk. She sometimes helps the kids with reading, writing and art projects, and being needed is good motivation.
"You wouldn't think the children would want to spend the time with us, but they do," Ms. Maras said one recent morning, after reviewing the letter 'i' with five-year-old Kayla Wolfenden.
With fewer children growing up with a grandparent in the home, emerging research suggests they are missing out on rich learning opportunities.
Even on their first day in the home, the children seemed naturally drawn to the elders. There's a symmetry between them, each in life stages that leave them a little vulnerable.
As learning partners they're a good match. Reading, for instance, is a skill often preserved long after age has eroded other mental faculties. And Barbara Carriere says the seniors make for patient teachers, and the children are at ease around them. "They're just completely accepting of each other," she said. "It makes for a million magic moments."
The Preschool 0-5 Inside a Nursing Home:
For the elderly residents, interacting with the kids is a jolt back to the world of the living.
Numerous studies have linked social interaction with decreased loneliness, delayed mental decline, lower blood pressure, and reduced risk of disease and death in elders. Socializing across generations has also been shown to increase the amount of smiling and conversation among older adults.
Six times a week, teachers take their groups to the residential floors to visit the elders for anywhere from 20 minutes for the infants to 60 minutes for the older children. Residents are welcome to observe in the classrooms, and structured activities for the children and residents to participate in together are scheduled daily. Because they share the same building, there are opportunities for spontaneous engagement, too - when inclement weather strikes, and the children must make do with the halls, lobby, and vacant rooms as their playground, for example. Or when an area musician comes around to play tunes for the children to sing and dance to along with the elders.
Another resident with advanced Alzheimer’s whose speech was incomprehensible garble was able to speak in complete, fluid, and appropriate sentences the moment she was wheeled into the baby room. “You could immediately see that she had accessed some part of her brain that had raised several kids,”
The children enjoyed the increased attention too, and had more opportunities to develop their social and emotional skills.
Life affirming interactions, with both care staff and service users commenting on how beneficial
plenty of research confirming that bringing generations together can and should be the way forward for care systems.
Old and young can bring new energy, knowledge and enthusiasm to each others’ lives.
Planned interactions between elders and college students, schoolchildren, or youngsters of other ages in a variety of settings.
What the groups do when they meet can be as relaxed as playing a game or reading a book together. But the activities they take part in are truly unlimited:
An intergenerational orchestra brings together musicians aged between six and 90-years-old, for example.
Young and old work together on local environmental projects.
Increase self-esteem and promote friendships
Greater smiles and more conversation for elders
Rent and staff costs can take up as much as 95% of expenditure at care facilities, but both are reduced when shared care is adopted.
Sadly, without someone in place to keep an intergenerational project moving forward, many end after two years. Investing in staff time, and ensuring the time young and old spend together is planned and appropriate for all ages is key to the care practice working. The two groups cannot just be left in a room together, the idea here is to build relationships, and help each person benefit from the enthusiasm, knowledge and attitudes of each other.
You don’t think about your age when you are in the company of young children. The little ones brought a new sense of vibrancy and fun to the centre, and the focus was no longer on watching time pass but on living in the moment.
Older people have the time, and skills that are often underutilised, for this kind of care to work, so putting a shared care plan in place makes sense.
Programmes that bring children and older adults together could change the whole of society’s outlook.
Promote intergenerational learning and create new possibilities for senior citizens and young children to learn together and benefit from each others’ company. We believe that this is more important than ever before across the world. People are living longer but older adults and young children are having less and less contact with each other. Parents and grandchildren are migrating to cities and countries far away from grandparents.
Benefits of learning together for both young children and older adults and for communities at large This included mutual understanding, improved feelings of wellbeing, decreased loneliness and satisfaction from sharing knowledge and experience with children and enhanced social cohesion
Puzzle, paint ... at talbes where the seniors sit in a way so that the children can come in between easily.
When she comes to visit, the children move gingerly around Ms. Maras, careful not to bump her legs or her walker. They slip in and out of the chair beside her, bringing storybooks, toys and drawings to show off.
Let them time, regularly, fitting rooms for seniors and the young.
Help recognizing each strengths and what is in common.
Not everyone is thrilled to see the children – some residents lament the loss of their common room, many prefer sleeping in long after class has begun, and others blame the children for a flu outbreak last winter.
"There definitely are some residents who just aren't interested, they want to be left alone," said Adrienne Turner, the community manager in charge of activities at the home. "But more and more of them are warming up."
Older adults who worked with children in a school setting had less stress and a better quality of life compared to those living at a high-end facility interacting with their peers. And the cost is low: The parent council at Eileen Madson raised just over $2,200 to cover the cost of their intergenerational program. Most of the budget went toward transportation and supplies for the off-site classroom.
"It turns out I really love teaching the kids," she said.
This was something of a surprise, as Ms. Maras never married or had a family of her own. The trick to keeping children happy, she says, is enabling them to feel independent.
"You can't help them too much," she said. "You have to let them figure it out on their own."
Among families in cities where nuclear families tend to be the majority, it is unusual for children to interact with their own grandparents. For these children, they were able to feel this warmth and caring through contact with older people who were the same age as their great-grandparents.
Considering the needs of both children and the elderly, such facilities should adopt a new type of barrier-free design that takes this type of interaction into account.
If employees can switch as necessary between the child-care center and nursing home, although this may be difficult to put into practice, it will be beneficial for their mental health and also raise their motivation.
Students living in nursings home for free contributing 30 hours a month for reading together ... conversations evolve, teaching something. Brings happiness and interest to the residents. Helping in practical things, doing together.
Young children, older adults and the community as a whole benefit by participating in intergenerational learning activities.
Young children learn about traditions, food production, local history, develop new competences (e.g. cooking skills and gardening); build significant relationships with elderly people, experience calm and structure, receive more attention especially in ‘time poor families’; learn citizenship values and norms such as having respect, being polite, being helpful; become aware of ageing and of other cultures.
Older adults feel valued and useful for society, which enhances their self-esteem; they experience new energy; their physical and mental health and well-being is improved; they learn new skills such as how to read books to young children; learn from children with a migrant (family) background how they live.
Communities benefit by all generations being together, learning together and having fun together. Not only does the individual wellbeing of citizens grow, the community as a whole benefits. Citizens learn to build social relationships without fear; learn to value and respect each other; learn to negotiate how to do things and how to disagree; and stereotypes about age, gender and culture are challenged.
I wish to come to Canada and help with this.
Believing I am gifted to connect on a heart level with people of all ages, and to help with encounters and settings for seniors and young.
Greetings and blessings