Preschool inside a nursing home helps ‘transform’ the elderly

Jun 18, 2015

A nursing home in Seattle has come up with a way to care for the growing-up, and the growing-old, while simultaneously bridging the gap between generations.

More than 400 elderly citizens call Mount St. Vincent their home. But what makes this nursing home unique is that it doubles as a preschool.

Every day, the elders and the children join together and engage in activities that range from dancing to storytelling to arts and crafts - or just to eat lunch.

Evan Briggs, a documentary filmmaker, decided that the social experiment was worth chronicling. She followed the residents of Mount St. Vincent for an entire year in an attempt to explore the day-to-day interactions of the very young and the very old. Her film, called ‘Present Perfect,’ is currently in post-production, ABC News reports.

Briggs, who filmed and funded the entire documentary on her own, has launched a Kickstartercampaign to help finance the film’s editing. With two week left to go in her campaign, Briggs has already reached her $50,000 goal.

On the film’s Facebook page, Briggs describes the documentary as a “simple and intricate story [about] the way we live now.”

Briggs told ABC News that she saw a “complete transformation” in the residents of Mount St. Vincent in the presence of the children.

“Moments before the kids came in, sometimes the people seemed half alive, sometimes asleep,” she said. “It was a depressing scene [but] as soon as the kids walked in for art or music or making sandwiches for the homeless or whatever the project that day was, the residents came alive.”

Briggs said that she hopes that this film will ignite a much needed conversation about aging in America.

“I love films that really make you think,” she wrote on the Kickstarter page. “And not just in the moment – but for days, weeks even months following.”

“After spending a few days observing the residents and kids at ‘The Mount,’ I knew this was one of those stories.”

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