276 Sky River Parkway • P.O. Box 602 •
Monroe, Washington 98272 • (360) 794-6359

Senior to Senior Project

Attitude Survey Questions for High School Students Regarding Seniors
     Click here for Survey

The Senior to Senior project was initiated by the East County Senior Center in Monroe in 2009 and was conceived as a joint project between the Senior Center and students from the Monroe High School. The project had two main objectives. The first was to jointly pack 100 emergency preparedness kits for distribution to low-income Seniors and younger, disabled individuals through the Sky Valley Food Bank. The second goal was to foster an increased appreciation for what these two generations can offer each other. This would be measured by before and after identical surveys to determine if any attitude shifts occurred.

We felt that this project would do much to improve relations between these two generations that do not have much regular contact and interaction with each other. There is no reason that while preparing citizens for emergencies, we can't improve the citizenship of our communities at the same time.

As the project developed, we engaged many community partners including the Sky Valley Food Bank, Pharm-A-Save pharmacy, the Snohomish Chapter of the American Red Cross and Costco. We received financial support from the Nysether Family Foundation, Puget Sound Energy, the Monroe Schools Foundation and former Monroe City Councilman Mitch Ruth. Jeff Guite from American Preparedness in Seattle was a key support person for us. His expertise and encouragement went a long way to make this successful. Many thanks to all of them.

A side benefit for several of the students (Hailey Liptack and Lindsay Dye) was participation in grant writing and the feeling of accomplishment that follows when the grant is funded. We had gathered enough funding by the end of Spring to proceed with the project.

We developed an 11 question survey for the students and one for the Seniors. They were basically the same survey with key words reversed. For example, the question for students -"Older people appreciate High School students" was changed for Seniors to "High School students appreciate Older people". The survey was administered in October. Immediately after the kits were prepared, the identical survey was conducted again. The hope was that a positive change would result from having representatives from these two generations interacting and working together. The results are simply a snapshot in time of a very specific group. We do not consider the results to be representative or transferable to a larger cross-section of these two populations.

Results from the initial survey showed somewhat better attitudes than we might have predicted. Our feeling that working together would have a positive impact on how each group felt about each other was proven with second survey results.

For students, the question cited above had the largest change and went from a neutral response in the first survey to a positive response in the second. The same was true for Seniors. Similar results came from questions relating to enjoying interacting with each other. One question that had an interesting response was on the Senior survey-"High School students think they have a more difficult time now than I did at their age". On the initial survey, Seniors thought that was true more often than not. After spending the morning talking to students, that attitude changed positively.

In conclusion, we think that this project was a worthwhile exercise that benefited the Monroe community. The participants all had a good time and felt that it was time well spent. There is no reason why this could not be replicated in other communities as well.

The East County Senior Center Legacy Society
An easy way to show your support for the East County Senior Center is to name the ECSC Legacy Fund in your will or trust. You can even name the ECSC Legacy Fund as a beneficiary of your retirement plan or Life Insurance. Your planned gift entitles you to membership in the ECSC Legacy Society.

The ECSC is grateful to Legacy Society members who have invested in the center's future through planned gifts. As a Legacy Society Member, you can help ensure the Center's financial security while benefiting your estate plan.

Endowment is for the continuation into the future for the East County Senior Center.
To learn more please click on "Gift Giving".


276 Sky River Parkway • P.O. Box 602 • Monroe, Washington 98272 •
• (360) 794-6359 • e-mail: director@eastcountyseniorcenter.org

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