Dutch tackling social isolation for elderly in nursing home by providing rent-free housing to students

HereWeGoAgain

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Dutch tackling social isolation for elderly in nursing home by providing rent-free housing to students

“Somehow we have to get older people back close to growing children if we are to restore a sense of community, a knowledge of the past, and a sense of the future.”
- Margaret Mead,



The Dutch are successfully tackling two problems with one solution in a model adopted elsewhere. There is a lack of student accommodation (as here) and residents in care home settings do not have opportunities to socially interact with young adults. So a nursing home in the Netherlands allows university students to live rent-free alongside the elderly residents, providing a minimum of 30 hours support to the Nursing home per month.

To earn their keep, they participate in the musical arts committee, assist staff therapists, and volunteer at various events throughout the year. Judson also requires them to give quarterly performances at each of their three campuses.

One student at Judson interviewed every resident, spending over an hour with each one, and compiled a keepsake book. She’s now working on a second volume to include additional residents.

Through social interactions alone, the young can pass some of their vigor on to the elderly, improving the older generation’s cognitive abilities and vascular health and even increasing their life span.
The intergenerational living model is beginning to gain in popularity. Since Humanitas opened its doors to students in 2012, two more nursing homes in the Netherlands have followed suit. And a similar program was recently introduced in Lyon, France.

In exchange for small, rent-free apartments, the Humanitas retirement home in Deventer, Netherlands, requires students to spend at least 30 hours per month acting as “good neighbors,” Humanitas head Gea Sijpkes said in an email to PBS NewsHour.
Students in the Netherlands spend an average of 366 Euros (roughly $410) each month on rent, up from 341 Euros in 2012. Student housing is often cramped or dingy, and is increasingly difficult to come by. Amsterdam, for instance, was short almost 9,000 student rooms last year
Academic paper explains the importance of social connections
Both social isolation and loneliness are associated with increased mortality, but it is uncertain whether their effects are independent or whether loneliness represents the emotional pathway through which social isolation impairs health.
Social relationships are central to human well-being and are critically involved in the maintenance of health (1, 2). Social isolation is an objective and quantifiable reflection of reduced social network size and paucity of social contact. It is a particular problem at older ages, when decreasing economic resources, mobility impairment, and the death of contemporaries conspire to limit social contacts. Socially isolated individuals are at increased risk for the development of cardiovascular disease (3), infectious illness (4), cognitive deterioration (5), and mortality (6⇓⇓–9).
A possibility for Ireland?

Age Action run an Intergenerational Programme

Generations Together programme which was launched in April 2011, focuses on establishing new intergenerational projects and supporting existing projects. The programme supports practice that creates opportunities for older and younger people to meet and learn from each other and to bridge the divide between generations. It promotes inclusion and builds on the positive resources that different generations have to offer to each other and those around them
Wherever there are beginners and experts, old and young, there is some kind of learning going on, some kind of teaching. We are all pupils and we are all teachers
. Gilbert Highet

Links:
A Nursing Home That's Also a College Dorm - CityLab
Social isolation, loneliness, and all-cause mortality in older men and women
Socializing with Youth Improves the Elderly's Health, Life Span - Scientific American
TOP 25 QUOTES BY GILBERT HIGHET | A-Z Quotes
Selected Quotations of Margaret Mead
Dutch nursing home offers rent-free housing to students | PBS NewsHour
https://www.ageaction.ie/how-we-can-help/generations-together
 


Analyzer

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In Ireland the primary objective of housing policy is to make the little bank of Suds look solvent (AIB).

Welfare for the well connected in the gombeen run instutional state.

The concerns of the elderly ? Students ? Young people starting in their first job trying to save a few bob ? These people do not matter. Let them fend for themselves. Let them fight it out. Largesse as usual at the top table.

Solidarity has been destroyed by Sudsonomics.
 
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blokesbloke

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Not a bad idea in principle but you'd want to screen the students carefully.

Forced to sit with someone studying Gender Studies or something similar would amount to torture.
 

Titan

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There was a BBC (I think) show a few months ago about isolated elderly folks helping out at schools and mentoring kids, especially some of the problems ones.

Tests were done on both the kids and old folks, and it was proven that mentally and physically both groups had shown improvements, so this Dutch idea is interesting.

But where would the students actually live? Most care homes wouldn't have space for a few students, let alone whole hoards of them.

But the idea of mixing generations to the benefit of both is one that should be explored further.
 

stopdoingstuff

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Not a bad idea in principle but you'd want to screen the students carefully.

Forced to sit with someone studying Gender Studies or something similar would amount to torture.
Nursing and medical students would be great. And if you targeted it at the poor students , who are inherently nicer people anyway (yes, the working class is morally superior imo), you would kill three birds with one stone.
 

amsterdemmetje

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There was a BBC (I think) show a few months ago about isolated elderly folks helping out at schools and mentoring kids, especially some of the problems ones.

Tests were done on both the kids and old folks, and it was proven that mentally and physically both groups had shown improvements, so this Dutch idea is interesting.

But where would the students actually live? Most care homes wouldn't have space for a few students, let alone whole hoards of them.

But the idea of mixing generations to the benefit of both is one that should be explored further.
Have you ever been to a Dutch care home, they are nothing like what we have here.The initiative by all accounts was started because of cut backs by the current Government to care for the elderly in the Home and in Nursing homes. Although they have to go along way to get to level of downright disregard here.The woman who runs the home in Deventer started it to make up in the shortfall in the cutbacks.
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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Have you ever been to a Dutch care home, they are nothing like what we have here.The initiative by all accounts was started because of cut backs by the current Government to care for the elderly in the Home and in Nursing homes. Although they have to go along way to get to level of downright disregard here.The woman who runs the home in Deventer started it to make up in the shortfall in the cutbacks.
It's not by accident that rather than refer to public money and citizens, politicians, media and IBEC refer to "taxpayers".

Everything after that point has to be measured against what the "taxpayer" (by which they mean income tax), gets out of it.

This is how the State normalises the disregard it pays to young, old, disabled, and disadvantaged.

And this is why banks and developers had blank cheques written for them by this State.
 

amsterdemmetje

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It's not by accident that rather than refer to public money and citizens, politicians, media and IBEC refer to "taxpayers".

Everything after that point has to be measured against what the "taxpayer" (by which they mean income tax), gets out of it.

This is how the State normalises the disregard it pays to young, old, disabled, and disadvantaged.

And this is why banks and developers had blank cheques written for them by this State.
Im not long back from Holland on holidays unfortunately my 85 year old Father inlaw had a mild Stroke a few months ago and has now just been diagnosed with Parkinson's. Having said that i spent a bit of time in the facility he was been looked after and by Christ theres nothing like it here, unless of course you have serious private cover.In Holland its the quality of care for all the matters, no matter who you are.He came home a few days before we left and the care he has been receiving there everyday is just amazing ,when i contrast what my own mother went through in the last few months of her life here this year it makes my blood boil.
 

Surkov

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Many years ago I did some voluntary work in a nursing home -couple of hours a week. Pretty depressing environment, to be honest. People soiling themselves, or I recall one or two who would suddenly start bawling crying, out of the blue, which can relate to mental deterioration, of one kind or another.

I guess it could be good as it would teach students to appreciate their youth and good health. But at the same time I think a lot of the students will be looking for an alternative come semester two, possibly even come week two!;)
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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Im not long back from Holland on holidays unfortunately my 85 year old Father inlaw had a mild Stroke a few months ago and has now just been diagnosed with Parkinson's. Having said that i spent a bit of time in the facility he was been looked after and by Christ theres nothing like it here, unless of course you have serious private cover.In Holland its the quality of care for all the matters, no matter who you are.He came home a few days before we left and the care he has been receiving there everyday is just amazing ,when i contrast what my own mother went through in the last few months of her life here this year it makes my blood boil.

A big problem with Ireland over the years was how little travel people did...what is normal in other countries isn't even considered here.

Hope that the FIL is ok
 
D

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Im not long back from Holland on holidays unfortunately my 85 year old Father inlaw had a mild Stroke a few months ago and has now just been diagnosed with Parkinson's. Having said that i spent a bit of time in the facility he was been looked after and by Christ theres nothing like it here, unless of course you have serious private cover.In Holland its the quality of care for all the matters, no matter who you are.He came home a few days before we left and the care he has been receiving there everyday is just amazing ,when i contrast what my own mother went through in the last few months of her life here this year it makes my blood boil.
Do the Dutch have the same kind of tradition that was once so prevalent in Ireland where the children band together to look after elderly relatives?
 

cunnyfunt

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Not a bad idea in principle but you'd want to screen the students carefully.

Forced to sit with someone studying Gender Studies or something similar would amount to torture.
Some of the ole folks might require trigger warnings alright....or even safe spaces
 

Mitsui2

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Do the Dutch have the same kind of tradition that was once so prevalent in Ireland where the children band together to look after elderly relatives?
Depends very much on the family involved but overall I'd say yes - leastways that's how I've seen it work in my other half's family.
 
D

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Depends very much on the family involved but overall I'd say yes - leastways that's how I've seen it work in my other half's family.
It seems to be something that has changed in a generation or so in Ireland. Purely anecdotal, but from my own experience the younger folk seem less interested in the older folk's wellbeing. The job I used to have saw me in all parts of the county during any given month. Myself and the lads on the crew were never stuck for a cuppa tea, given we had kin all over the place and it was common for us to drop in and visit during, what we called in the olden days, dinner time.

We'd all have our lunches and would stop along the way at a shop to pick up a Swiss Roll and what not, but just stopping in to visit with the oldsters and listen to their stories, and more importantly, allow them tell them, taught me a lot. Of course they weren't all great visits, and we'd often be treated with contempt by the typical, suspicious rural Irish grandfather/mother...."Are you anything to the Milltown Dangers? Where is your father from?"

I remember once back in west, west, southwest Connemara, and four of us heading into a grand uncle of mine's house. The man could barely speak English, and the Irish he had had such a blas that it was very difficult for anyone other than a local to understand him at the best of times. A tall thin man, hardened and weathered by a lifetime fishing on the Atlantic. The lads reached the point where they were so confused that it sort of frightened them, but the tea was strong and hot and welcome on a cold day, and when the cake came out, himself took down the poitín.

I was the senior man on the crew, and they took their lead from me. We all had a dram so as not to offend, and away back to work. I spent the trip back to town that evening answering questions about the man and his life. Simple as it was, they found it fascinating. There were many of their own relations we'd stop in to see down the years and I used to love listening to their own stories of days and people long since gone.

It seems the Dutch have recognized that the oral histories are worthwhile, and that once we stop listening to them, they'll be gone forever. It's a worthwhile endeavor and I wish them well. Hopefully it'll catch on.
 

Mitsui2

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It seems to be something that has changed in a generation or so in Ireland. Purely anecdotal, but from my own experience the younger folk seem less interested in the older folk's wellbeing. The job I used to have saw me in all parts of the county during any given month. Myself and the lads on the crew were never stuck for a cuppa tea, given we had kin all over the place and it was common for us to drop in and visit during, what we called in the olden days, dinner time.

We'd all have our lunches and would stop along the way at a shop to pick up a Swiss Roll and what not, but just stopping in to visit with the oldsters and listen to their stories, and more importantly, allow them tell them, taught me a lot. Of course they weren't all great visits, and we'd often be treated with contempt by the typical, suspicious rural Irish grandfather/mother...."Are you anything to the Milltown Dangers? Where is your father from?"

I remember once back in west, west, southwest Connemara, and four of us heading into a grand uncle of mine's house. The man could barely speak English, and the Irish he had had such a blas that it was very difficult for anyone other than a local to understand him at the best of times. A tall thin man, hardened and weathered by a lifetime fishing on the Atlantic. The lads reached the point where they were so confused that it sort of frightened them, but the tea was strong and hot and welcome on a cold day, and when the cake came out, himself took down the poitín.

I was the senior man on the crew, and they took their lead from me. We all had a dram so as not to offend, and away back to work. I spent the trip back to town that evening answering questions about the man and his life. Simple as it was, they found it fascinating. There were many of their own relations we'd stop in to see down the years and I used to love listening to their own stories of days and people long since gone.

It seems the Dutch have recognized that the oral histories are worthwhile, and that once we stop listening to them, they'll be gone forever. It's a worthwhile endeavor and I wish them well. Hopefully it'll catch on.
I'd give that post two likes if I could.

It seems to me - and I've lived through it, noticed it as it happened and thought a lot about it - that there's been quite a complex change here as regards intergenerational relationships over the last twenty years or so, but this is not really the time or place to discuss it. It involves nuances, and p.ie is a pretty cold place for nuance these days.

But - on the bright side - on past experience I'm sure someone will be along soon to give you a very definite (if simpleminded and historically illiterate) explanation of how it's all about Right and Left and Global Capitalist Libtard Open Borders conspiracy and so on.

With which I wish you all good luck.
 

cyberianpan

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Old folks with dementia get very lechy ...like we are talking say the dirtiest dog you ever knew for leg humping...and then some

It would be necessary to alter the norms of the young ones so that they'd become accustomed to same, my understanding is that it is best to get them young ...so there'd be a lead in time to the new domestic arrangements ...

[video=youtube;KzyAQZftfbM]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KzyAQZftfbM[/video]

cyp
 

Mitsui2

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But - on the bright side - on past experience I'm sure someone will be along soon to give you a very definite (if simpleminded and historically illiterate) explanation of how it's all about Right and Left and Global Capitalist Libtard Open Borders conspiracy and so on.
Old folks with dementia get very lechy ...like we are talking say the dirtiest dog you ever knew for leg humping...and then some
Needless to say (I hope) I didn't intend to include cYp in that quoted list. I thought by this hour of the night he'd be out finding some new and genuinely interesting art or else barbecuing some workingclass baby in a dubious fashion or something (obviously no offence meant, cYp!).

He is also of course neither Right nor Left wing. In fact I'm told that in a recent unprecedented Congress the entire avian species has barred him (specifically) from claiming kinship with either of their upper appendages.

"Having your wings claimed for Hitler or Stalin is one thing," said a spokesman who wished to remain anonymous (though word has it that he/she looked very like a turkey behind the Guido Fawkes mask). "It's disgusting, but you grow up with it and you learn to live with it. But with that cYp it all just gets too complicated. He's just too bloody Irish."

Not all dementia patients turn into letches (sp?). Admittedly the two male examples I've known personally definitely did. But both were people who'd rigorously suppressed that side of themselves in their adult lives, so its emergence in both cases didn't surprise me and in fact I predicted it at a very early stage.

One often hears something like Alzheimer's prettied up as a return to childhood: this is based on a ludicrously sugary version of what childhood actually consists of!
 

RasherHash

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In Ireland the primary objective of housing policy is to make the little bank of Suds look solvent (AIB).

Welfare for the well connected in the gombeen run instutional state.

The concerns of the elderly ? Students ? Young people starting in their first job trying to save a few bob ? These people do not matter. Let them fend for themselves. Let them fight it out. Largesse as usual at the top table.

Solidarity has been destroyed by Sudsonomics.
Exactly, and the job of students is to get big loans the can't repay; the point of old ppl is to die bc they are a drain on the elite and the point of Age Action is to provide lucrative positions for suds pals and
to keep the bank of suds and politics friends afloat.
 

captain obvious

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I think we have a problem in general in the way we treat the elderly. The proposal in the OP has merit but it comes only as a means to solving another seemingly higher priority problem; namely that we don't have enough housing for students. And we wonder why we have a never ending series of scandals relating to geriatric care.
 

Jack O Neill

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Many years ago I did some voluntary work in a nursing home -couple of hours a week. Pretty depressing environment, to be honest. People soiling themselves, or I recall one or two who would suddenly start bawling crying, out of the blue, which can relate to mental deterioration, of one kind or another.

I guess it could be good as it would teach students to appreciate their youth and good health. But at the same time I think a lot of the students will be looking for an alternative come semester two, possibly even come week two!;)
In 50 /100 years time nursing homes will be viewed in the same way as we now view industrial schools ,they are nothing more than living refuse dumps for old people
 


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