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23:29
0414 d1e8 420

ultrafacts:

A nursing home in the Netherlands allows students to live rent-free alongside the elderly residents, as part of a project aimed at warding off the negative effects of aging.

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.”

Officials at the nursing home say students do a variety of activities with the older residents, including watching sports, celebrating birthdays and, perhaps most importantly, offering company when seniors fall ill, which helps stave off feelings of disconnectedness.  They are allowed to come and go as they please, as long as they follow one rule: Do not be a nuisance to the elderly.

Similar intergenerational programs exist in Lyons, France and Cleveland, Ohio, according to the International Association of Homes and Services for the Ageing. One program that began in Barcelona, Spain in the late 1990s has been replicated in more than 20 cities throughout the country.

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