What are intergenerational relationships?
Intergenerational (or cross-generational) relationships are when people who are born in different generations, usually young people with their elders, spend time together and form friendships. These relationships are mutually beneficial, as the older person often becomes a mentor, sharing their knowledge and experience, and the younger person provides socialisation and joy, providing them with a sense of fulfilment and purpose. These intergenerational relationships can also fill a void for children who do not have a grandparent present in their lives.
Socialisation and health benefits
Bringing the different generations together has many social and health benefits.
- Mental health improvement with reduced feelings of isolation and loneliness
- Increased social engagement can help with memory, cognitive stimulation and communication.
- Skill sharing occurs, especially with technology, learning skills and hobbies.
- It gives older adults a sense of purpose and helps younger generations have a greater respect for and value of older adults.
- It helps keep stories, languages and history alive within families and the greater community.
In addition, young adults with an older person to mentor them are:
- 46% less likely to take illegal drugs than their peers
- 27% less likely to start drinking underage
- 55% less likely to skip school than their peers
- 78% more likely to volunteer regularly
- 130% more likely to hold a leadership position
- Less likely to experience symptoms of depression
Becoming part of a community
While not everyone has family close at hand, there are many opportunities to create intergenerational relationships. Volunteering at local schools or community organisations is an excellent way to share knowledge, skills and develop fulfilling friendships.
At Kalyra, we have several programs that foster relationships between generations, from weekly playgroups with younger children through to visits from high school aged children. We celebrate the great benefit that both residents and children receive from engaging in play activities and sharing knowledge. Our intergenerational programs were recently featured on the Ageless Friendships series by the ABC. (You can view the episode here)
In addition, the Southern Montessori Middle School is co-located with Kalyra’s Woodcroft Aged Care home, providing both the residents and the children an opportunity to enjoy each other’s company and share new experiences and learnings.
Kalyra, it is different here.
To find out more information about Kalyra, please contact us on (08) 0278 0300.