Our seniors laugh often, are loyal to each other and are capable of loving. They deserve to be treated with dignity and one can learn a lot from them... Due to the young age of your members, they are blessed with vitality, hopes and dreams and it is my belief that these intangibles will rub off on our seniors or at least remind them of good times.
- East Village Community Partner
LINKages is proud to be a part of strengthening communities and helping improve quality of life for young and old in our city. With the generous support of United Way of Calgary and Area and The Calgary Foundation, we are establishing connections and friendships between East Village seniors and LINKages post-secondary student volunteers. LINKages works with the University of Calgary LINKages Club, seniors and community partners to organize and facilitate regular intergenerational community events in the East Village that strengthen community ties and engagement.
IG*101 - funded by The Calgary Foundation
IG*101 is a visitation program that offer seniors a unique opportunity to engage with young adults (18yrs+). Participants in the program will be matched up with youth volunteers for weekly visitations and a group activity once a month. The duration and the timing of the weekly visits will be scheduled with flexibility & accessibility in mind. Participants are welcome and encouraged to discuss and decide what activities they will enjoy together – whether that be going for a walk in the neighborhood, visiting galleries, gardening or simply sitting down for a chat over an afternoon tea. During the initial meeting where participants meet for the first time, LINKages staff will assist in facilitating a discussion and creating a list of activities that are mutually agreed upon.
Linkages In The Community (LINC), funded by Human Rights & Multiculturalism Fund (HREM)
Thanks to financial support from HREM, LINKages was able to enhance their work in the East Village by embarking upon an environmental scan to gain first-hand insights into the issues, opportunities and potentials embedded in this community that is undergoing major redevelopments.The findings of the scan were shared with stakeholders and will inform and influence LINKages' ongoing intergenerational work in the East Village. A summary of these findings can be found in our Annual Report 2014.
Seniors and Technology
Youth volunteers from Bowness High School and seniors from Bow Centre Place meet Friday afternoons for six weeks in the spring for the Silver Surfers program. Students share their digital knowledge with seniors while seniors inspire students with history, knowledge and life experiences. The Bowness culinary students bake up treats for the seniors' visits and the seniors have become more involved in school activities like attending school plays. The relationships that are created reach out into the wider community, enhance social ties reduce age segregation. Thank you to Chinook Energy and Calgary United Way for their support of this program.
For a first-hand account of the Silver Surfers experience, read Terry Buckley's Bowest'ner article.
Techno-Elders Mentorship Program (TEMP) Digital Connections (DC)
TEMP & DC are community based technology programs that reach out to independent living seniors. Through partnerships with the Youth Central, Bow Valley College, Immigrant Services Calgary and the Bridgeland Community Association, LINKages provides mobile technology sessions for seniors right where they live. While LINKages bring along computer tablets and mobile data, seniors often come along with their own technologies wanting to gain mastery of digital equipment they already have. Funding for this initiative is provided through the Government of Canada's New Horizons for Seniors program, The Calgary Foundation and Shaw Communications.