Inter-generational programs at the North Shore are a source of delight for everyone. The North Shore is a leader in offering well-developed, ongoing programs that enable the sharing of knowledge, experience and friendship between generations.
The Chute School Intergenerational Program, in its 20th year, pairs North Shore residents with students from Evanston’s Oscar M. Chute Middle School who are learning English as a second language, giving both the chance to socialize and learn from one another. By participating in organized and interesting events scheduled each month throughout the school year, participants get to know one another and students get to practice their English. Students often write letters to their senior, providing an educational exercise for the student and a day-brightening visit to the mail box for the senior.
Senior Connections trains and supports volunteers who visit and befriend seniors who are mobility-limited or living alone so that both people’s lives may be enriched. Volunteers include students from Northwestern University and Evanston Township High School who want to reach out and offer a friendly ear to an older person, and seniors who want to visit with (and perhaps mentor) a younger person. The students and seniors visit with each other weekly, sometimes sharing meals, craft projects, listening to music, or exchanging stories. Participants cherish the advice, friendship and wisdom they get from one another.
The North Shore Graduate Scholarship Program was developed in 2003 in cooperation with Northwestern University and affiliates and has since expanded to include other area colleges and universities. The program is open to graduate students who are studying or interested in an aging-related field. In exchange for room and board for one academic year, students conduct weekly seminars or presentations, lead and participate in social programs and take a required number of meals in the dining room. Graduate scholars have included seminary students, PhD candidates in psychology, neuroscience, political science, medicine, international law, humanities, and music. Currently, residents enjoy weekly programs offered by 5 outstanding graduate scholars from Northwestern University, Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, DePaul University, and Indiana University.