Storykeeper Program Concludes With Celebratory Luncheon
Published: September 14th, 2023
By: Sarah Genter

Storykeeper program concludes with celebratory luncheon Dominic, a participant in the Storykeeper program, reading his memoir about AEC member Frank at the end-of-season luncheon. (Photo by Sarah Genter)

NORWICH — The Place Teen Program, in partnership with the Chenango Valley Adult Enrichment Center (AEC), has concluded this season of the Storykeeper program.

The program began early this year, and teens Dominic and Trinity met with seniors Frank and Elaine each week to learn about their life, enjoy crafts and activities led by AEC Coordinator Bonnie Lamb, and learn writing and interviewing skills with Storykeeper Program Facilitator and former Evening Sun Reporter Sarah Genter.

The teens also spent time interviewing the seniors, wrote memoirs detailing the lives of Frank and Elaine, and read them at the end-of-season luncheon on August 30.

Story Continues Below Adverts

The Storykeeper program serves as a way to bridge the gap between generations and foster friendships – something that can have major benefits for both seniors and teens.

“There are many benefits to intergenerational programming for seniors and youth. For seniors, intergenerational programming offers positive interactions and leaves the senior feeling invigorated and a valued member of the community,” explained The Place Executive Director Sharon Vesely. “Many seniors have displayed increased cognitive functioning after a series of interactions. Youth also left with a sense they are valued and a contributing member of the community.”

“Studies have shown that as a result of intergenerational interactions, youth are less likely to begin using/abusing drugs and alcohol and are more likely to remain in and attend school on a regular basis,” she added.

The Storykeeper program was made possible by funding provided by the American Baptist Home Mission Society. In previous years, the Greater Norwich Foundation has provided funding for the program.

To learn more about upcoming seasons of the Storykeeper program, contact The Place Teen Program Coordinator Julie Dealing at or 607-336-9696 ext. 109.