I have been with the linking generations program for 5 years now. Five years is just about a third of the time I’ve lived. Through this program, I can recognize now that five years is not that long of a time.
Some seniors in this program are over 100 years old! Despite being in the program from grade seven to grade 12, I really only feel I’ve experienced a fraction of what any of these seniors could impart on me. I could spend every day just talking with any senior in the room and I would never hear all of their stories.
I also feel that I’ve gained a greater depth about how they live. Sometimes, when I’m in class at school, I find myself thinking “I can’t wait until Thursday!” and just a couple weeks ago it struck me: Some of our seniors feel like this all week, every week. Once I realized this, I finally fully realized this program’s impact on both us as students and our seniors: —- for us, it has increased our compassion and has also given us a greater understanding of other ways of life. For the seniors, it has given them someone they see often, someone they can talk to and share experiences with.
I could never give enough thanks to this program for helping me develop these skills that I will have for the rest of my life, and I think I speak for the seniors when I say they’d thank us for giving being a friend.