Bridging the gap between the young and the young at heart

Bridging the gap between the young and the young at heart

March 05, 2013

Residents of Greenwood Towers, a Toronto Community Housing seniors� building, and students from Danforth Collegiate and Technical Institute have come together to build relationships, swap stories and gain a better understanding of one another at their weekly intergenerational lunch program.
Participants in the program, created by Toronto Intergenerational Partnerships (TIGP), a Toronto Community Housing partner, spend time playing games, chatting and eating lunch together. The program was recently featured on Susan Hay�s �Making a Difference� segment on Global News.
�The meaningful relationships that have formed through this partnership are flourishing,� said Sue McMahon, Executive Director of TIGP. �The youth enjoy spending their lunch hour with their senior partners and many youth have extended their involvement as they have made friends with the seniors. �The visits by the youth brighten the day for seniors and the program has also integrated cultural groups within the building.�
In an effort to strengthen community relations, TIGP works with the seniors and neighbouring school youth to breakdown the stereotype of ageism and help the two groups build a strong relationship.
�It�s good to hear about programs that focus on integrating communities,� said Michelle Haney-Kileeg, Vice-President of Toronto Community Housing�s Resident Services division. �Our new Division relies on these programs and we plan to involve residents in the evaluation of programs and services to ensure continued quality.�
The program, funded in part by the Toronto Central Local Health Integration Network and the City of Toronto, is another example of strong partnerships that Toronto Community Housing will continue to build, in order to improve the lives of residents.