Beth, Jason, and their now three-year-old son Henry moved into the Pat Crowley House in early 2017.
Like many growing families they were looking to move to a bigger space at an affordable price. When they found a listing for the third floor apartment at the Pat Crowley House it seemed too good to be true. After they came in for a tour of the apartment they were hooked on H.O.M.E.’s intergenerational housing model.
Jason was fascinated by the model but for Beth moving to Pat Crowley House seemed like a natural choice. She had grown up with her grandmother. That experience really shaped who she was and she wanted her son to have a similar experience.
They did not want their home to simply be an apartment to live in; they wanted it to be a community that they choose to be a part of.
Beth and Jason also hoped to model their values for Henry and they decided that Pat Crowley House would be an ideal setting to do just that. It was an opportunity to be a part of a diverse community where you can develop tolerance and understanding for one another -- an opportunity to live in a place where you learn from one another by sharing stories.
The LaBrosses have become an integral part of the Pat Crowley House community. They attend community nights and grill for their senior neighbors. Last month Jason, a geography professor who was also a tour guide at one point in time, took the residents out on a tour of the lakefront and downtown Chicago.
Being around seniors, some of whom have children of their own, also serves as a source of comfort during some of the more stressful moments of parenting a young child.
They see the seniors as role models and friends.
"He has all of these people who want to be a part of his life," says Beth. "last week he had four people cheering him on because he went potty by himself!"
Henry stops by and visits his neighbors downstairs every day to say hello. He spends some time with Joan, Myra, and some of the other senior residents. He also gives Christine a hug and sometimes convinces her to let him play with her walker.
Research from Generations United shows that being around children is also beneficial to older adults. It helps improve mental and physical health outcomes. It also reduces feelings of isolation and enhances seniors' cognitive and learning abilities. Christine, a senior resident at Pat Crowley House told us “I can’t say enough good things about H.O.M.E., coming to PCH has been a real blessing for me... It’s warm and it’s comfortable and friendly and it just feels like having a really nice family around you. If you don’t have a lot of close relatives, this is the next best thing.”
The families and younger residents also benefit, according to Jason "We're getting just as much from this experience as they are, just in a different ways."
Starting tomorrow H.O.M.E. is participating in Give65, a 65-hour online giving event exclusively focused on seniors. Our goal for Give65 is to raise $15,000 for Pat Crowley House renovations and accessibility improvements!
As a bonus we are eligible for a $5,000 maximum dollar-for-dollar match from the Home Instead Senior Care Foundation AND competing for an additional $10,000 award, so your support will go even further!
Our success depends on working together as a H.O.M.E. team! You can schedule your gifts for Give65 today!
Will you consider making a special gift for Give65?
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