Intergenerational Day June 1, 2023
Ottawa Celebrates Intergenerational Day on June 1st by "Bringing Generations Together"
The City of Ottawa will proclaim June 1st as Intergenerational Day for a fifth year, at the request of iGenOttawa.
Since 2019, iGenOttawa has seen an increase in awareness of the value of bringing different generations together. Here are just a few examples of organizations and activities encouraging intergenerational connections:
- Local schools are fostering relationships between generations, including penpal activities and in-person visits. One example is Immaculata High School's “Caring for Others" program where grade 10 students visit Perley Health weekly to provide companionship and assist with fun activities.
- Andrew Fleck Children's Services is developing a demonstration site of best practices for intergenerational programming in three settings, in collaboration with the Council on Aging of Ottawa and others. More details can be found here, including how to get involved should you be interested in becoming a "grand-friend"!
- To create more social spaces where people of different ages can come together, iGenOttawa partnered with Ottawa Community Housing (OCH) and the Ottawa Tool Library in 2022 to create a sectional Gathering Bench on the grounds of Clementine Towers. Since then, more have been built on other OCH properties!
- Music connects different generations in simple and meaningful ways, including students performing at seniors residences and informal collaborations with family and neighbours. Check out this heartwarming intergenerational video by OrKidstra and Canadian Showtime Chorus! Listen here I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing - Celebrating Intergenerational Day 2021 - YouTube
- Volunteering: Many organizations offer volunteer opportunities that bring different generations together, including the Ottawa Network for Education's Volunteers in Education Program and JA Ottawa.
Wonderful things can happen when people from different age groups come together, including the potential for improved health outcomes, knowledge-sharing, and an increased sense of belonging— in both directions. In addition to participating in organized intergenerational activities, there are many ways to informally connect with someone from another generation. Think about what you could share with someone from another generation—your time, your interests, your talents. Even small acts—a simple hello!—can make a difference and lead to more meaningful connections. Happy Intergenerational Day!
Kindergarten students from Hopewell Avenue Public School made cards for seniors (see above) attending iGenOttawa’s “Intergenerational Day” presentation as part of the Seniors' Centre Without Walls program.