Our Dream - Making Loneliness History
In our society, the old and the young do not interact as much as they have historically. Our goal is to improve this interaction and be a movement to combat ageism.
We are using a simple yet effective HomeShare model which not only benefits the seniors’ mental and emotional health, whilst providing companionship support and security for them, but it will also be good for students in terms of affordable housing. H2O aims to form the foundation for placing two different generations in the same living space and giving them a reason to interact.
Student engagement in conversation and questions (within the boundaries of respectful discussion, of course), can contribute to an older adult’s reflection and mental, emotional, and social health. In exchange, this sharing of lessons learned is likely to be received well by students.
Older adults who have room would like to open their homes and want help with basic household tasks and companionship with a younger college student who has been already interviewed by H2O and passed the police background check can share their home for free or at a low rate with a younger adult looking for housing.
For elderly people who would like to continue to live with a good level of personal independence in their own home this exchange offers the homeowner security, companionship and help for an agreed amount of time each week.
Reciprocity is the key in these programs; college students who need housing and want to provide friendship, assistance, and a sense of security can have their needs met and give to seniors who want to provide housing.
A long-term outcome of this network would be to enhance community engagement and offer a better quality of life for both seniors and students in our society. We predict that H2O will have an economic, social, educational and well being impact.