Friends for the Ages | Kids VT | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Friends for the Ages 

Community: Grand Friend Program

Published December 1, 2013 at 4:00 a.m.

The director of Heartworks Shelburne Preschool has been arranging a different kind of playdate this fall: between students and residents of the Lodge at Shelburne Bay, a senior living community down the road. The new Grand Friend Program brings the two groups together. In October, several seniors attended the school's Halloween parade; in November, students went to the Lodge to make Thanksgiving crafts. "There are tremendous benefits to this kind of intergenerational program," says Heartworks director Libby Macdonald. Her students get to engage with older adults and practice their social skills. As for their new pals? "It provides them with a strong sense of their value in the community," says the Lodge's resident services director Cherrie Willette. It's the next best thing to visiting grandma.

Grand Friend Program: Find more information at heartworksvt.com.

This article was originally published in Seven Days' monthly parenting magazine, Kids VT.

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About The Author

Cathy Resmer

Cathy Resmer

Bio:
Deputy publisher Cathy Resmer is an organizer of the Vermont Tech Jam. She also oversees Seven Days' parenting publication, Kids VT, and created the Good Citizen Challenge, a youth civics initiative. Resmer began her career at Seven Days as a freelance writer in 2001. Hired as a staff writer in 2005, she became the publication's first online editor in 2007.

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