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Sharing wisdom

Youth tell the stories of older adults
Age Is More is the cause Revera champions by shining light on the meaningful contributions of older adults in society. Through original research and creative collaborations, Revera demonstrates the fulfilling lives seniors lead throughout their later years and break down the stereotypes of older adults. Learn more at AgeIsMore.com.

On January 24, Mississauga youth and residents from King Gardens Retirement Residence screened nine short films for a standing-room-only crowd as part of the Revera and Reel Youth Age Is More Film Project. The project brings together the young and the young at heart to share stories and celebrate the ageless spirit of older adults. The premiere was fit for Hollywood and as the lights dimmed and the first film played, audience members were clearly emotionally moved by the stories of Revera’s residents.

Revera and Reel Youth, a team of filmmakers based in British Columbia, have been working together since 2013 to tell the stories of older adults through the lens of young people. “The vision is to bring youth and seniors together through creativity so that they can build connections and learn from each other,” says Mark Vonesch, the founder of Reel Youth.
“Collaborations between youth and older adults may not be common, but there are tremendous opportunities for inspiring conversations and lessons when they do happen.”
Over the course of two weekends, the young filmmakers met with their film stars and crafted films about their lives. Many of the youth had never touched a camera before and simply had an interest in learning about the process that goes into making their own movie. Now that the project is over, many say they are considering further developing their filmmaking skills after high school.

The residents volunteered to meet with the youth and have their stories documented. Some shared how they came to Canada from places like Malta, Northern Ireland and India, others talked about what life was like growing up on a farm, and some shared their advice on how to have a happy marriage. All of them, however, shared the same enthusiasm to meet with the youth and make a new friend.

Collaborations between youth and older adults may not be common, but there are tremendous opportunities for inspiring conversations and lessons when they do happen. For at least this one night, they were all stars and as the lights came back on everyone in the room had a new outlook on what it means to be young at heart.

You can relive the Gala Premiere of “Anything Goes” at the link here.