Bridging Ages with the elderly, Ashton, South Africa

Silver Threads Service Center for the elderly, in the small community of Ashton, South Africa has made Bridging Ages an internal part of their work and started a five year project. The inspiration is taken from the More Living-Active Age project, on elderly care and heritage, between South Africa and Sweden. The main goal is to restore the value of the elderly within the community, by creating awareness for the significant role of the elderly and the importance of history in society. This will be done by establishing permanent on-going Bridging Ages activities to add value to the development of Ashton and surroundings.

There are four major focus areas:

  1. Establish a ‘Traditional medicine’ garden and Nursery as a social business enterprise, focusing on the role of traditional medicine in modern life. This include selling of plants, compiling and selling of a booklet on ‘traditional medicine’ and recipes. It will create jobs for the unemployed and income for the elderly.
  2. Compile a book containing the life stories of our elderly including their role in the historical, social and economic development of Ashton, a new edition to be published in 2016. The book sales will give funds and also participate in the local tourist trade.
  3. Establish a permanent training centre for sewing skills and hand quilting. This helps jobless women to become self-sustainable. Knitting and crochet skills training work-shops will be organized.
  4. Restore value of the elderly in the community through different events/programs:

There will be special Bridging Ages and Time Travel programs with the elderly every week. Several study circles will be introduced; there will be social inter-action and school holiday programs with elderly, youth and children, even a youth/elderly week-end camp. The aim is to establish awareness for each other’s needs and embrace the generation. This includes our “Adopt-a-granny” program’

There are plans for day trips, dancing, performances/ time travels based on the life-stories of elderly, and a lot more…