A Grandbuddy Program initiated by a long term care facility and an elementary school can create golden moments between two generations. When a student and an older adult first realize that the other person, once a total stranger, is now important to them, the relationship then starts to “matter”. The building of relationships do not just happen when two people are just put together. They require careful planning, time over the course of at least ten months of interaction and an understanding of one another. Stereotypes flourish under conditions of inadequate contact and knowledge reinforced through the segregation of youth and elderly. It has been proven through relationship building a positive perception of a generation can change. 

Benefits for the Junior Grandbuddy include:

  • Development of healthy attitudes towards aging
  • Students will learn the concept of aging, disabilities, and losses associated with the aging process
  • Improved self-esteem
  • A strengthened sense of community and social responsibility
  • Promotion of culture, heritage and history
  • Breaking down of stereotypes about older adults and replacing with more informed understanding of aging
  • Development of friendship

Benefits for the Senior Grandbuddy include:

  • Staying involved in their community
  • Improved life satisfaction
  • Enhanced self –esteem
  • On-going skill development
  • Feeling of continued usefulness in the community
  • An opportunity to engage in life-long learning
  • A chance to give back to their community
  • The chance to share their life experiences and knowledge
  • To provide an informed knowledge base about youth today
  • Development of friendship