Bridging the Intergenerational Gap

DATE: August 3, 1999 
TO: Board of Supervisors 
SUBJECT: Bridging the Intergenerational Gap

SUMMARY 
The aging population throughout the County of San Diego is growing at twice the rate of the general population. The juvenile population is expected to increase 44 percent by the year 2020, and the at-risk juvenile population is expected to increase 29 percent by the same year. In a time when today's young people are faced with enormous pressures, it is critical that this region provide every available resource to our youth. Today's action takes a step toward filling an unmet need by utilizing an untapped resource - this County's seniors.

Recommendation:
Vice Chairwoman DIANNE JACOB 
Direct the Chief Administrative Officer to work with the appropriate agencies in establishing an intergenerational mentoring pilot project in the community of Ramona and to provide a status report to the Board of Supervisors in 45 days.

Fiscal Impact:
There is no fiscal impact for this pilot project.

Background: 
The aging population throughout the County of San Diego is growing at twice the rate of the general population. The juvenile population is expected to increase 44 percent by the year 2020, and the at-risk juvenile population is expected to increase 29 percent by the same year. In a time when today's young people are faced with enormous pressures, it is critical that this region provide every available resource to our youth.

An intergenerational mentoring program for seniors and youth will provide children with valuable guidance by capitalizing on the knowledge and wisdom of our seniors.

The benefits are limitless. Interested seniors from the community will provide young people with academic assistance and enrichment, a relationship with a trustworthy and dependable adult, and guidance to solve personal problems and to become contributing members of the community.

Over the past year, the community of Ramona has been working diligently on the conceptual creation of an AIntergenerational Community Campus. When built, this Acampus will be home to activities for all age groups. For example, it will house an education center, a library, coffee house where teens learn entrepreneurial skills, and a child care center - manned by all age groups. It is for this reason that the community of Ramona is an ideal location for the implementation of an Intergenerational Mentoring Project.

Bridging the gap between youth and seniors not only improves the lives of everyone involved, but also creates a natural link that could serve as a model for the rest of the County. I urge your support.

Respectfully Submitted,

DIANNE JACOB
Supervisor, Second District