The Berkeley Heights YMCA is proud to be launching an Intergenerational Mentoring Program. This six-week pilot program brings high school teens and seniors together to share experiences and expertise with each other.  As a group, they will brainstorm and complete a community project together as well. This mentoring program will be led by an experienced group facilitator who will guide the group through the process.  The program will have its first meeting Wednesday, February 22, 2017 from 4:30-5:15 PM at the Berkeley Heights YMCA.

Intergenerational programs bring both younger and older generations together where talents and resources are shared that benefit both the individuals and the community.   Interacting with older adults enables youth to develop social networks, communication skills, problem-solving abilities, positive attitudes toward aging, a sense of purpose and community service.   According to AARP, students who worked with seniors for a single school year saw more than 60 percent greater gains in literacy skills than those who didn’t participate. 

On the flip side, seniors learn new innovations and technologies from the younger counterparts while feeling a sense of belonging and purpose which leads to greater self-esteem.  According to a recent Harvard University article, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests people who give their time to others might also be rewarded with better physical health—including lower blood pressure and a longer lifespan.  Both the younger and older generations benefit tremendously from this connection and experience.

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For more information about this program, please contact Maria Nolting at the Berkeley Heights YMCA at (908)464-8373 x2024.  Registration is required.

The Summit Area YMCA is a cause-driven organization that is for youth development, for healthy living and for social responsibility. A strong community can only be achieved when we invest in our kids, our health and our neighbors. The Intergenerational Mentoring Program benefits all community members with the stepping stones needed to build a better tomorrow.

The Summit Area YMCA is one of area’s leading 501c3 organizations. Our programs and services are open to all through our financial assistance programs made possible through the generosity of our members, donors, staff and partners. To help us help others, please make your donation today at www.thesay.org.