Visiting the Senior Centre…

Yesterday I visited Touch Services Centre, the senior services organization hosting my intergenerational drama program. It made me very happy to be there. The seniors were so friendly and kind. The Centre reminded me a lot of similar institutions in the US, although I have never seen seniors engrossed in games of mah jong. I am hoping someone will teach me how to play. I have only tried the game online, and that was very different than what I saw yesterday.

The wonderful directors of the Centre introduced me to a reminiscence-generating game they often use to inspire conversation and ilicit memories from the seniors. The game is essentially a series of old photographs on index cards, with a description of the photograph printed on the back in Mandarin, English, and Malay.

I was fascinated with these cards, most of which had images of products and situations so different from my own history and cultural experience that I was almost awe struck. I especially liked the images of the Cinema on Wheels (which is exactly what you might think it would be), and seeing old belts and shoes from early – mid 20th century.

We are still sorting out the schedule for the workshops, but because of the school schedule we will have to finish the project by the end of May. I am hoping we can fit in at least 6 workshops with the elders.

This afternoon I’m meeting with the JC students who will be working on this project. They are a fantastic group; I’ve met them all a few times while observing their classes in past weeks and I like them all. Looking forward to getting to know them through this project.

On Thursday the JC students will have a Skype conversation with my students in Seattle. I’m excited about this, but concerned of course that the tech will not work, etc. I have to be at the school at 6:30 am (and it’s about an hour from my place!) so I’ll be freaking tired! That morning I am also meeting with the elders who will be involved in the project (with a translator – none of these elders will have a fluent knowledge of English).

Super excited about the project! I am really grateful for all of the pieces falling into place in order to make this happen. Great stuff.

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One thought on “Visiting the Senior Centre…

  1. What a grand cultural immersion!
    I’m looking to implement an intergenerational program with some of my mental health clients and their families, focusing on cultural roots and the process of immigration and acculturation. Thanks for illuminating so many possible paths. I always learn so much from your keen process and innate curiosity.

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