Helping Hands is an arts and crafts program that meets the needs of two communities — older adults and homeless populations — at the same time. Older adult participants socialize at the library while they make sleeping mats from upcycled plastic bags. The mats are then given to nearby homeless populations.
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Stickering is a fun alternative to the coloring craze, and it requires few supplies. I purchased three "Paint by Sticker" books — two for children and one for adults — to use at the event. Participants were invited to pick out whatever image they wanted from the books and go to work!
The children's images took about 30 minutes to complete, and the ones for adults took approximately an hour.
Watch the video below to see how painting-by-sticker works.
Teen Tech Tutors is a hands-on monthly program in which local teens help others (mostly older adults) with technology questions. Patrons bring their own devices to the library where teens are available to answer questions and give one-on-one tech advice, training and support. This is a drop-in program; registration is not required.
We recently started an annual murder mystery program in our library, inviting patrons to both witness and interact with the drama as it unfolds.
After purchasing a murder mystery kit online and enlisting the performance skills of local actors and library staff, the program came together fairly easily. The event attracted 100 participants, appealing especially to our senior patrons.
With Older Americans Month coming up in May, now is a great time to review your list of upcoming programs under a new lens. During her speech at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in January 2016, AARP's Jo Ann Jenkins identified three key areas we can address for our aging population: health, wealth and self. Do you have any programs that fall into these categories? If so, are they marketed toward older adults?