Intergenerational Programming

Providence Mount St. Vincent Foundation

We create magic by connecting the beginning and the end of life through shared experiences between the very young and the residents at The Mount.
Give Now

Make the Magic Happen

 

Providence Mount St. Vincent is one of the most recognized intergenerational communities in the world. We are committed to providing an environment where those at the end of their long lives experience as much joy as those who are beginning their lives. And more importantly, the two generations are experiencing this joy together in one building.

Each year, our extended family grows as new students and residents arrive at The Mount. And each year, the Mount Foundation provides $100,000 to support the “magic” of intergenerational moments. This funding is an investment in building relationships between students and residents.

Donate Now


 

The Impact of Intergenerational Programming

Our Impact

Intergenerational programming creates built-in “grandparents” and “grandchildren” for friendships and learning. The Mount is known as a national and international role model in changing the landscape of intergenerational relationships. People travel from all over the world to study our model. We have been pioneering blending young and old since the establishment of the Intergenerational Learning Center (ILC) in 1991. Today, the program connects 400 elders who make The Mount their home with 125 students who attend the ILC.

Art & Music

Artists, musicians, and theatrical arts specialists can lead creative activities to engage all ages. 

Higher Teacher Ratio

Facilitates frequent visits in resident neighborhoods.

Specialized Intergenerational Activities

Creates more opportunities for students to interact with residents in everyday settings to normalize the aging experience. 

A Student's Impact

The only things I remember well from my preschool days are the purple reading couch in the drop-off area, Mama Dee’s cooking, my frustration one year over not being placed in the Ladybug Room with my best friend, and the day my parents brought cake into my class when I became a big sister. I remember that weekly art classes with the residents were my favorite, and the experience I still credit for sparking my love of art and creativity. Those were the moments I would sit closest to the residents, collaborating with them despite differing levels of communication and physical abilities. I was too young to understand what battles the residents were fighting, but I understood the positive experiences we shared.

After preschool, I remember the years of volunteering at the Mount Summer Concert Series and the years of setting up Black Tie Bingo. I remember the people and the connections: Mama Dee, precious moments with my parents, my preschool best friend, the other volunteers, and the residents.

A desire to connect with people is what I hold onto to this day. Now, in addition to cognitive and physical ability differences, language, social, and economic differences push me to work harder to connect. I’ve studied Spanish since kindergarten in my effort to communicate and connect with more of the population around me, and completed my Spanish minor last semester in Madrid. The summer before, I interned at my local King County Sheriff’s Office, translating for any Spanish-speakers and helping to implement the Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion Program. This program gives those in our community who battle substance abuse and mental health problems, domestic violence, low education, or homelessness an alternative to prison: shelters, job training, rehabilitation programs, GED courses, etc. Now back in college in Chicago, I work for the Chicago City Council in a struggling neighborhood greatly affected by the same battles. I work in conjunction with the Chicago Police Department’s Community Outreach Officers to provide resources to those whom society is inclined to ignore. 

Read More