Community Care: Connecting Students and Seniors

Community Care: Connecting Students and Seniors

Emily Reimer-Barry, PhD, associate professor and chair in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies, serves as the Christian Action co-coordinator for second- and fourth-grade students at St. Rose of Lima Catholic School in Chula Vista. The fourth graders visit regularly with the senior residents of Fredericka Manor, an assisted living community in Chula Vista, playing games and making crafts with them.

"This is a once-a-month community immersion experience for the St. Rose children,” Reimer-Barry explains. "It is the highlight of my week when we are able to do it," she adds.

The COVID-19 pandemic interrupted so many aspects of our daily lives, including "disproportionately impacting nursing homes," Reimer-Barry says. Recently, she worked with the fourth graders to raise money to buy lunch for staff of Fredericka Manor. The students also got creative with how to continue their connection with the residents. Reimer-Barry says, "Since we couldn't visit, we asked the kids to submit artwork or letters." 

Expressing hope for the future, she adds, "We look forward to the time when we can visit again to play games and do puzzles and lift the spirits of the residents."

begin quoteWe look forward to the time when we can visit again to play games and do puzzles and lift the spirits of the residents.
Letter from fourth grader with a hand-drawn rainbow that says "Thinking of you in this stressful, scary, sad time. Please stay safe."

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