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Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Teens and Elders Together Against Ageism

Thanks to doctafil who blogs at Chalk Jivin', we know about this Canadian film project with teens and elders working together to help fight stereotyping and ageism.

”Through the Age is More program, run in conjunction with Reel Youth, a non-profit organization that focuses on youth and filmmaking, the teens were paired with seniors to make short videos delving into the older peoples' lives.

"'It was amazing,' [16-year-old Opal] McLean says. 'It opened my eyes completely because I never considered ageism to be a really important subject.'"

Opal worked on this film about 88-year-old Bernard Beaudoin:

The project, organized by Revera Inc., a Canadian provider of seniors' care, services and accommodation, grew out of a 2012 research report that found

”...six in 10 seniors age 66 or older say they have been treated unfairly or differently because of their age.

“More than three in 10 Canadians admitted to ageist behaviour, and, according to Revera, 71 per cent 'agree older people are less valued in our society than younger generations.

"'There's a misconception that as soon as you retire...it's like an expiry on a food product," says [Greg Shaw, a director at the International Federation of Ageing.]
The is young filmmaker Ashley Warren with Norma and Roy Clark whose video she worked on.

Roy-and-norma-clark with Ashley Warren

And here is the video with 91-year-old Norma and 87-year-old Roy.

What didn't get mentioned in the film is that Norma is a retired nursing instructor and Roy is a retired surgeon.

”While the Clarks would have liked their video to explore their career experiences, they appreciated the opportunity to be part of the project.

"'I think there was a good camaraderie in all of the relationships,' says Norma. 'When we signed up, we weren't all that sure it was going to be worthwhile, but it was really good. And then when they showed the pictures...it was excellent.'"

The students did such a good job producing these films, we should see another – this one is about Derek Edwards:

I'm sure Opal McLean isn't the only student who learned a lot about elders and I'm guessing the reverse is true too. This is such a productive way to get young and old people together that it should be tried in high schools all over Canada and the United States.

You can read the CBC story about this teen/elder project here and you can see all the short films the students made at Age is More.

At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Thomas Moore: A Musing

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


R.O.M.E.O is so clever. Retired old men eating out. I wish I could think of an acronym for old women.

I]'m glad that people are beginning to change their perspective on we elders. Young people forget that we were once young and they will be old (if they're lucky),

All elders have a story to tell and it would behoove the young to take the time to listen. I wish I had asked my grandmother about her life and I wish my granddaughters were interested in mine. Maybe they will read my memoirs someday.

At 68 years of age, I certainly can be considered a Senior Citizen and yet, even I find that I have had preconceived ideas about my co-ageists.
Up until a few years ago I was living independently, alone hardly ever coming in contact with with anybody over 65 years of age. It was not until an illness forced me into a nursing home and eventually an ALF, did I realize that there was more to the elderly than just wrinkles.
What I mostly discovered is that we don't lose our desire to learn or our sense of humor, our kindness or our compassion when we get older and, while we are victims to the "ravages" of time we basically are the same people we have always been.

Many, many years ago when I was young!-- now coming up on 86 FAST! I worked in the town Library as a Volunteer. How quickly I found out the most interesting patrons were the 'old' ones! Nothing more boring than the teen-age self absorbed period or the new mother (all about feedings etc adinfinitum) Lots of my oldtimers were Veterans, one was a much decorated Police detective--a real sweetie pie!
and on and on. I learned a lot and enjoyed them immensely.
Then there are the very, very young--do they have secrets to reveal! Mom and Dad would be mighty surprised. A wonderful time!

Thanks so much Ronni for this
relatable post! How how very wonderful and interesting these video's of elder's filmed by youth's who are actually getting acquainted with each other!
Living as I do in an R.V. park with many other RV'rs, of varying ages, we are all elders. There are no children under 18 other than short term visitors. There are no residents under retirement ages.
Every day,7 days weekly, we gather together in our "Ranch
House" for our "Social Hour." We share with each other and our visitors. Additionally we have many outreaches into our neighboring communities which are 20, 30, and 60 miles away, one way!
For 10 of the 13 years I have been a park resident, I have played music at Nursing Homes in all three of these communities, either weekly or every two weeks. Now I play at home for our daily Social Hour.
It is so true that the more we reach out to others, the greater the personal rewards as well as those we provide for people we connect with!
Again Ronni, thanks for all you do to bring so much more into all of our lives!

When I was in grade school an
assignment was to build a family tree with comments about the currently living elders.
This led to my elders getting the tree built along with me and my getting better acquainted with them!

Just yesterday I received my Mom's "Memoirs." My Uncle, her "baby brother", who is 87, put it together for her and mailed it out to family members. There are pictures included from her youth and of
many family members along her way. The world will again celebrate her 103'rd birthday
this New Year's Eve.

My Mom, Uncle and brother, who is 83 and myself at 82, are the remaining elders in our family.... Good Genes I suspect!

Very nice videos. I'd have been glad to listen to any of the interviewees talking longer.

ROMEO groups exist in many places. I know guys who belong to such a group. I've been trying to think of what a JULIET group could stand for and got as far as Just US Ladies... but then what?

I once knew a woman who ran a small hospice for the elderly in her home.

She usually had anywhere from 4 to 6 people staying with her at a time.

She also had her daughter's four children living there and it was wonderful to see the oldsters and the children interacting.

You would expect the old folks to love the little ones but the truth is the babies loved to sit on the laps of the elders and have a book read to them or have a story told.

It was a sight to see the way the two age groups got along so well together.

@ June Calender: I really like your idea of calling your group JULIET. How about finishing with "JUST US LADIES INFORMALLY EATING TOGETHER"

Keeping busy doesn't leave time for me to think about the growing number of wrinkles I see in the mirror.

I am fortunate to have young people around me and I sometimes find I forget my age.

I had my own teen elder project. I raised my granddaughter as well as my own children and went through the teen years once again when I was in my 60's! I attribute much of my attitude about living and toward the world at large to being around young people most of my adult life.

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