Key Takeaways

  • Every year, NISC's annual Programs of Excellence Awards honor and promote the outstanding programs offered by senior centers across the country.

  • Learn more about Girl Scouts and Seniors, a 2022 Programs of Excellence Award Honorable Mention in the Intergenerational category.

NISC Programs of Excellence 

  • Year Awarded: 2022
  • Programs of Excellence Name: Girls Scouts and Seniors
  • Hosting Organization: Lee Council on Aging, Massachusetts
  • Lee Population: 5,444
  • Senior Center Members: 600

About Girl Scouts and Seniors

What started as a call for anyone interested in hosting a Girl Scout troop at the Lee Senior Center has turned into an ongoing win-win of an intergenerational program.

Three senior center participants responded to that call and became certified Girl Scout leaders. Now in the second year of hosting the 10-scout troop, the leaders and the girls meet weekly at the senior center. Activities include learning to cook, making dog biscuits for animal shelters, collecting clothes for the homeless, studying different cultures, hosting dinners, and working on a fashion show with dresses made only of newspaper!

This program helps both the senior center members and the girls. The older are role models for the girls as they relate stories of the past and how things were in the past, and the girls help the older adults with their cell phones and computers and explaining new fads. The senior center members enjoy helping teach the girls how to cook, set tables, respect others, how to get along and act in public, and show empathy, and the girls liven up the older adult leaders and give them something to look forward to every week. 

smiling girl scouts

Key takeaways from Girl Scouts and Seniors:

  • The program benefits both older adults and young girls.
  • Funding comes both from donations (eagerly given by community members impressed by the success of the program) and fundraising.
  • Once people heard about the Girl Scout troop at the senior center, more people came to the center to offer their help. For example, a minister come in to talk about her visit to Israel, and local fire department personnel gave lessons on first aid.

About the Lee Council on Aging

The Lee Council on Aging "is committed to  providing services and programs to community elders 60 and older" and runs the area Lee Senior Center. The many and varied services provided by the council include transportation, meals and nutrition education, exercise programs, and social programs. Health clinics are offered through Porchlight VNA/Home Care, and a state trained health insurance counselor is available to help with medical insurance assistance. The council works with Elder Services of Berkshire County and networks with other organizations service to the elder community and their families. The council operates with a Director, Secretary, transportation driver and Board, along with volunteers, to provide services to the community