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Let's start a system in which we have school/college in every city/state/country must adopt this model.

Let's have system where every school/college partner with every assisted living/ nursing home /hospital . Where each and every old people are visited regularly by students and give them credit for the visits and make it compulsory like English/Math. That way we make sure every elderly person has someone visiting them and taking care of them till last days of their lives not just Christmas and Thanks giving.

  • Jan 21 2012: Very nice thought's.the reason I think school be involved is that it will give them early start to learn and be part of compassion society at early age. They can get involve in small task like reading stories and doing little task.
    Just seeing those sweet face around can mean to world to some elderly people a world , who has no one visiting them. I just Love your second para duties, give and take and make a healthy society. It will help a lot with depression and Loneliness as well. Someone to check that they are not put on drugs and keeping them sleeping by nursing home and extra set of eyes to make sure they are properly cared for and looked after in absence of unavailability of family members. Who are away, busy and scattered in different states.
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    Jan 21 2012: I'm not sure that a "program" involving the schools is the best, but there certainly is a need for more interaction among the generations, at least in today's USA. Students are pretty busy with school, and "assignments" to go see a senior group may not be one of their favorites. I've belonged to several singing groups (my own quartet, for example) that regularly went and performed voluntarily for nursing homes. We always stayed and talked with the folks, and it was usually very enjoyable. I think perhaps volunteer efforts may help with elderly loneliness, but I think we need to invigorate volunteerism again in the US. It seems to have slacked off.

    I'll push one of my pet notions: I think that in our appreciation of our democracy we've fallen in love with our "rights," which is the self-centered "take" part of the give-and-take of a society. We seem to have forgotten that a society involves "duties" as well, the "give" side of the equation. I feel that we should institute a mandatory national service period of at least a year for high school graduates or 18-year olds, where they would serve in various social service organizations (or the military). This would provide some of the young people a chance to interact with needy older people. It would also give them needed maturity before going on in life, to college or whatever.
  • Jan 21 2012: Wonderful, Its all about being interactive and being part of each others lives and feeling including and taking care of each other every day of our lives. Contributing laugh, love and care in each other life and being appreciated and cared for. I love the twist and all suggestion welcome.
  • Jan 20 2012: Its good for Kids to be away from gadgets and have live conversation with knowledgeable person with life's experience. There needs to be exchange of knowledge and love and care, both ways. State can participate as well at different levels.Kids will learn to be more responsible caring and giving and not just think about there interest.
  • Jan 20 2012: As a senior citizen, I think I'll weigh in on this idea.
    First off: Many of us "old" people still have our wits about us and can teach those younger then us a great deal.
    2nd: Our bodies are giving out not necessarily our minds.
    3rd: Why not take your idea & turn it around? Instead of dragging the younger folks to us, let us come to them in their schools?
    Many of us senior citizens do enjoy being around the younger generations & we have so much to impart to them. And not all of it is "Old fashioned" either. We are up on all the news & electronic gadgets, etc. too. (I happen to be using a pc to write this & a member of TED).
    Many of my friends (all much older then I) would leap at the chance to have a sit down with students at many levels of education. After all, we have been there & done that way before you were born.
    Yes! There are many seniors that are looking at the end of things, but most still can function mentally.
    Your idea is basically good, you just need to flip it around & twist it a bit.
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    Jan 20 2012: I really don't see the benefit of elders being with students who are forced to be in the same room as them when they would want to be playing PlayStation, watching movies, hanging out with friends or doing something else. Being in the same room is very different from having a true conversation.

    Loneliness in elders is a greater problem than this idea tries to make believe. Why don't States support initiatives like social activities for elders (social gatherings, dancing classes, gymnastics, ...)?
  • Jan 20 2012: It should be not looked upon as imposing duties on other rather helping fellow human being with or without family does not matter. Everyone is busy with there own work and in different states. So the need become more acute. No one should be left alone in times they need the most. Kids will only learn how to care for other human being from this and create a compassionate society as a whole. Elderly will fell loved and cared for every day and not left alone. Society should be everybody's responsibility. Kids have so much to them. they are rich resource of life's knowledge.
  • Jan 20 2012: Should this only apply to elderly people who have no family? If there are family members, it is the responsibility of the family to care for the elderly, not the government (or students being forced to do so by the government). Many people in many western countries have forgotten that it's a moral duty to care for the elderly family members. It is this that need to be fixed, rather than imposing duties on others.