Bringing Smiles to Elderly Residents: Seattle Eastside, WA
On April 1, 2023, SSE (Sai Spiritual Education) children of the Sri Sathya Sai Center of Seattle Eastside visited the residents of Aegis Living Center of Redmond. It was part of their module on valuing grandparents and the elderly. The SSE teachers had planned a fun-filled visit.
All 16 children were excited about the visit. They were accompanied by three SSE teachers and eight parents. The children greeted the seniors with happy smiles and lovingly presented them with the beautiful cards they had made, along with beautiful roses. They also sang several songs they had rehearsed.
The young visitors then played games with the residents in small groups - tic tac toe, chutes and ladder, and jigsaw puzzles. They read out aloud from story books, and colored pictures with the seniors. The elderly residents were very kind, loving and attentive, like they were the children's own grandparents. Everyone enjoyed themselves so much that the time flew by quickly, and before they knew it, it was time to leave.
Here are a couple of reflections from a few of the SSE students about their experience. “I took some coloring sheets with me. We were joined by a couple of seniors in the coloring corner. I loved how they answered patiently when I asked them about their childhood hobbies, their favorite color etc. I found them to be very kind and loving. When one of my friends asked for the chair that I was using, one of the seniors very sweetly redirected him to another empty chair, saying that I needed one to color. I learned that standing up for someone is a good thing to nurture."
"At the end of our visit, they presented me with the cards they had colored which showed their selfless and giving nature. These cards are precious mementos of this memorable experience for many years to come.”
“I learned a lot while playing games with a senior. I learned patience because it was hard to teach a senior how to play Uno, but we persisted through the difficult parts and enjoyed the game together. I learned that if we are patient and persevere, then we will enjoy the rest of the game."
It was a great afternoon. All the children, teachers and parents enjoyed meeting the senior residents, and sharing love and laughter with them.