There is a gap in society that my friends at LINKages in Calgary is filling. In this new age of technology, segregation, and social media we haven’t really noticed this gap, but it’s importance doesn’t go unnoticed in the effects on community.
LINKages is connecting generations, a seeming lost art in our world. It connects youth with seniors. This is powerful because it brings the community together and reminds us that the world is bigger than just us and our own age group and demographic. It gives youth a chance to learn from those who are older, and seniors an opportunity to give mentorship and wisdom gleaned from their years. Transferred knowledge between generations is something that is supposed to happen but is getting less frequent.
Connecting generations is important because it takes a village to belong. Whether we know it or not, the younger need the wisdom and friendship of the older, and the older have a sense of worth and purpose when they can invest in the next generation. Perhaps many of our issues of fear of growing older, or things like getting grey hairs or wrinkles could subside if we were in relationship with someone older; to see their beauty, their grace despite aging? What would this do to someone older on the inside concerning their beauty? It could reinstate their value going past their outer appearance.
Bridging the gap also solves the “us vs them” issue. Teens can view older adults as being against them. Older adults can misunderstand youth. Bringing them together brings back empathy and compassion. We miss out when we don’t interact with one another generationally. There’s a level of growth and maturity that doesn’t reach its full potential when a youth misses out on this relationship.
Here are some testimonials that Link Ages has received about this needed program:
“I am more able to cope and have a better perspective on community and how I “fit”. I have more confidence as well”.
“It has changed my daughter’s perspective. It has taught her to put down her phone and connect.”
It’s important to provide opportunities for generations to connect with one another. Let’s see what bridges can be built in this capacity that will create waves of belonging for all.
To learn more about LINKages, visit their website by clicking here.
LINKages is one of our partnering organizations for The Cypher coming this month at the Martha Cohen Theatre, June 11-13. You can purchase tickets to the show by clicking here. By attending the show, you are helping us create resilient youth in Calgary.
Also join LINKages at Intergenerational Day on June 1st and we have events at the Genesis Centre from 11-3 and in the East Village from 1-4pm.