Arrive on any weekday at Grandma’s House Childcare and you’ll find young children enjoying stories, music, and more. As Grandma’s House is part of Cassia’s Redeemer Health and Rehab Center in Minneapolis, children there also get to know older adults.
Grandma’s House opened in 2001 to provide child care in a welcoming family atmosphere. Founders wanted to bring older adults and young children together to enrich both generations’ lives.
Today, children call Redeemer’s older residents and patients “grand friends.” One such friend is Herbert Kauffman, who is recovering from a serious illness. Children visit him often and created a birthday card Herbert keeps in a place of honor. “Children are magic,” he says. “They motivate me to stay positive in my own life.”
Lead Teacher Christopher Hoff, whose six-year-old daughter attends Grandma’s House, has worked there 11 years. “The children, including my daughter, are fascinated by residents’ stories,” says Chris.
Across town at Augustana Regent in Burnsville, resident Jan Sullivan tutors Apple Valley High School students learning English as a second language. Some students have become nursing assistants through the school’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Program.
The program involves a partnership between Apple Valley High and Cassia to offer career opportunities for students interested in health care careers. “We get to know them and they get to know us,” says Jan. “That brings us all closer and makes everything possible.