Toronto Intergenerational Partnerships (TIGP)

Bringing Generations and Communities Together Since 1986

Benefits to Seniors:

  • Improved life satisfaction
  • Enhanced self esteem
  • Ongoing skills development
  • Feelings of continued usefulness and connectedness in the community
  • An opportunity to meet other caring and talented seniors
  • An opportunity to develop meaningful connections with children and youth that extend beyond family and acquaintances

Benefits to Children and Youth:

  • The development of healthy attitudes towards aging
  • Educational enrichment
  • Improved self-esteem and opportunity for leadership skill development
  • A strengthened sense of community and social responsibility
  • The promotion of culture, heritage and history

Intergenerational Programs Serve to Build Stronger Communities:

  • Promoting positive attitudes towards aging as children and youth are exposed to an image of aging that is healthy and active
  • Linking cultures as well as generations and thereby fostering positive attitudes and positive regard for people of diverse cultures
  • Decreasing isolation, violence, crime, abuse and the dysfunctional behaviour that may be prominent in today's society
  • Mobilizing and utilizing the strengths and talents of all ages to meet the needs and interests of communities across Toronto 

Benefits to Community Partners:

  • Intergenerational contact contributes to the health and well being of participants and the community as a whole
  • Participate in the refinement of intergenerational service models to better respond to the issues affecting seniors, youth and children 
  • Ability to influence the approaches to developing tools and knowledge that address needs and issues through collaborative intergenerational activities
  • Access TIGP resources: e.g. volunteer training, our intergenerational service models, etc.
  • Access to services not previously accessed (TIGP intergenerational support, schools and other community agencies/organizations/ institutions.)

Long-Term Benefits for TIGP Community Partners:

  • Sharing of findings from research that identifies issues and needs of children, youth and seniors within a diverse community
  • Support from TIGP in appropriate areas identified as needed
  • Knowledge base of intergenerational programs and activities 
  • TIGP is committed to work with partnering agencies to seek further funding for successful programs
  • Create a mechanism within the community that continues to inform and influence intergenerational program design and delivery
  • Long-term relationships will be established among existing and potential partners who are involved in intergenerational program design and delivery to continue to respond to emerging needs 

TIGP in its intergenerational programs and activities have demonstrated that collaborative partnership models can identify and specifically address issues to improve the quality of life of participants. Programs and activities gain a life of their own, their momentum creating ‘spin-off’ initiatives over time as relationships are built and needs emerge and change. 

Needs and demographics of the senior population is changing and evolving. Seniors living in poverty, low and diverse literacy levels, isolation, health and social needs and abuse within an aging and increasingly multi-cultural population are some of the main issues cited in current Statistics Canada information.

It is our experience and it is widely documented that intergenerational contact contributes to:

  • Both the individual and the community’s health and well being. Increases the mutual understanding, acceptance and support for each generation.
  • Improve the safety and security of neighbourhoods.

We believe these facts hold true for many seniors including those from a diverse background; however, the issues become more complex for those multi-cultural/multi-lingual seniors because of access, language and literacy issues.

Statistics Canada’s socio-economic analysis of Health and Literacy Among Children Report demonstrates that the socio-economic environment remains an important determinant of health and that variables such as income and literacy continue to have a direct and indirect effect on people’s health status. There is a relationship linking literacy and populations with high risk among senior citizens. This relationship tends to occur for all ages and both sexes.

The National Council on Aging in its "Seniors Independence: Whose Responsible", believes that government, individual families and groups in the community can collaborate to maintain seniors’ independence and autonomy and that within a supportive and complementary partnership, each can play a significant role.