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Retirement Communities Say 'Bring In the Kids!'

Intergenerational programs benefit all age groups

"My family lives far away in Oregon, and moving into Judson feels like my family has grown exponentially," Lynch says. "I have all these residents looking out for me and supporting me and sharing their wisdom and life knowledge." One neighbor grows vegetables on the rooftop and often brings some to Lynch. She takes painting lessons from another, and explores Cleveland with a third.

Lynch performs many concerts outside Judson as well. "One of the hardest things is when I don't know anyone in the audience," she says. "But because of the residents' support, I have yet to play anywhere when there hasn't been at least one person from Judson in the audience."

"Bravo" to intergenerational opportunities, says Hoskins, the Judson resident. "It makes me feel younger to interact with young people, and it beats the day-to-day routine!"

Sally Abrahms, a writer from Boston, wrote this article as part of her MetLife Foundation Journalists on Aging Fellowship in partnership with New America Media and the Gerontological Society of America.

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