Beginning an Intergenerational Program
Just beginning to engage in intergenerational programming? Before getting started, complete the Readiness Survey below. Then, use the Program Planning Guide in Appendix A to help you move through the steps of program development.
- Are you looking for concrete and FUN ways to connect your residents with the broader community?
- Do you have ORGANIZATIONAL SUPPORT to pursue partnerships with organizations serving children, youth, and young adults?
- Does your housing community have STAFF members who are willing and able to take responsibility for building partnerships and overseeing programming?
- Do you have SPACE that can be used to conduct intergenerational activities?
- Do you think your residents have an INTEREST in interacting with young people?
- Do you have a PASSION for this type of work?
If you answered “yes” to these questions, you are ready to develop your program.
- If you are ready to begin developing your NEW program, visit our Resident Assessment page on page 9.
- If you are ready to enhance your EXISTING program, continue to the next section.
Enhancing an Existing Intergenerational Program
Enhancing an Existing Intergenerational Program Do you have an existing intergenerational program? The following checklist will help you assess the degree to which you are following best practices in intergenerational program development. Then you can determine which areas of your programming are strong and which areas need to be enhanced.
Assessing Residents’ Interests and Skills
You will see greater resident participation in activities if you take the ideas and preferences of residents into consideration during the planning process. Focusing on the strengths residents bring to an intergenerational program, rather than on their vulnerabilities,will help your program contribute to residents’ self-esteem and sense of purpose.
Before you plan your intergenerational program or activities,find out what residents would like to do with children and youth,and the skills, knowledge, and experiences they would like to share. You can gather information by:
- Asking questions in a resident survey, interview, or group discussion.
- Identifying resident strengths through an activity called “Head, Hands, and Heart.”
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER
Based on the results of the resident assessment, think about the following:
- Needs: What are major gaps in services or unmet needs of residents that could be met through intergenerational programming? For example, do residents have a desire to learn new technology?
- Skills: What skills might residents wish to share as a part of the program?
- Youth Population: What age group do residents prefer to engage with?
- Types of Activities: What kinds of activities do residents want to engage in? Are residents passionate about any specific activities or community issues?
- Frequency of Contact: How often do most residents want to meet with young people?