Intergenerational opportunity at Kendal affiliate Collington

Intergenerational Connections

Research has shown the benefits of intergenerational connections. They can be meaningful ways for older and younger people to interact, learn from and enjoy each other. Kendal has recognized the importance for years. In fact, several Kendal programs are cited in the research as examples of success. The involvement of young people in Kendal communities spans the spectrum from preschool to artists-in-residence, graduate-level practicums, research and internships.

Mentoring and Tutoring

Kendal residents have a great deal to share. Tutoring or reading with elementary-age children happens throughout the Kendal System. Many residents–lawyers, entrepreneurs, medical professionals and others– share their professional expertise and perspectives with older students. 

Kendal at Oberlin’s intergenerational initiatives were designated a Program of Distinction by Generations United, a national organization focused on improving the lives of children, youth and older people through intergenerational programs and public policies. Kendal at Oberlin residents provide mentoring to those in need, continue in lifelong passions for teaching, act as surrogate grandparents and participate in the on-site Kendal Early Learning Center.

Intergenerational activity for Kendal Early Learning Center students

Early Learning Centers

On the campus of several Kendal communities, nap time is for kids! They operate high-quality, accredited Early Learning Centers based on Kendal’s Values and Practices. Children of staff and the wider community attend these centers, with fees on a sliding scale.

On-site child care helps attract and retain staff. What’s more, the Centers welcome residents to read, join in singing or otherwise volunteer. When old and young join together, everyone benefits.


Internships provide soon-to-be health care professionals and others with invaluable experience. Residents enjoy the interns’ optimism and eagerness to learn. Many interns later join the staff as employees, already familiar with our routines and expectations.

Kendal on Hudson, for example, has a formal partnership with nearby Pace University. The partnership allows residents to attend classes and events on Pace campuses in Westchester County and New York City. In return, Pace students will receive mentoring from residents and staff, career exploration and internship opportunities. The interns come from Pace’s Health Policy and Advocacy Program and Lienhard School of Nursing.

Residency Programs

Several Kendal communities have Artists-in-Residence programs in collaboration with local colleges and universities. For example, University of Maryland music graduate students live for a year at Collington, outside Washington, D.C. They receive free room and board (a huge benefit for any grad student!) in exchange for performing regularly and organizing concerts and educational programs for residents.