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Partnership with Franklin County Battles Ageism Through Intergenerational Programming

4/4/2017 | The Homefront

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Franklin County Senior Options, a program of the Franklin County Office on Aging, awarded National Church Residences Center for Senior Health a grant that sponsors intergenerational activities at the organization

National Church Residences Center for Senior Health believes that ageism can be reversed through programs that promote activities and relationship building between the seniors who attend their adult day centers and the children who regularly visit the centers.

“It is not so much the activity as it is simply connecting the kids with older adults,” said Terri Napletana, Site Manager at National Church Residences Center for Senior Health on Livingston Avenue on Columbus’ east side. “The children bring joy and promise to our older clients and the children learn many of life’s lessons through the gentle persuasion of an experienced hand.”

Intergenerational programming at the Center for Senior Health is highly orchestrated and is often planned in combination with adaptive therapy sessions, such as music, art and Tai Chi. Experience with this programming reveals that youngsters who participate in the programs readily abandon negative stereotypes associated with seniors. And seniors who participate have expressed increased self-esteem and feelings of productivity.

National Church Residences operates three adult day centers in Franklin County, including, Livingston Avenue, the North facility on E. Dublin-Granville Road, and the Champion Intergenerational Enrichment and Education Center on N. Champion Ave.

Franklin County Senior Options helps residents of Franklin County who are 60-and-older maintain their independence. It also supports family members with the often overwhelming task of caring for a frail, older parent, family member, or friend with limited abilities. Senior Options programming is funded by the Franklin County Senior Services Levy and serves approximately 6,000 seniors monthly.