Intergenerational activities

The idea: To combat depression, elderly people -- with dementia or otherwise -- should teach and care for children and young adults. Children and young children should help and support the elderly as well.

Hello, my name is István Kappéter MD, special education and pedagogy psychology teacher. I am from Hungary: Corvinus University, Budapest; Psychiatric Nursing Home in Tápiógyörgye. I have Lewy Body dementia since 1995 and Alzheimer’s disease since 2005.

I work in psychiatry; I started as a nurse in 1950. I am a special education teacher, pedagogy and psychology teacher since 1955. I got my medical degree in 1962, and I am a neurology specialist since 1966, a psychiatry specialist since 1968, a psychotherapy specialist since 1984, and a self-made futurist since 1991.
Elderly people – people thinking and otherwise more impaired than others at the same age as well – should care intensively for children and young adults; children and young adults should help and support elderly people – people thinking and otherwise more impaired than others at the same age as well.
I have read several reviews on how children and young adults think and live in different countries. At first these facts made me depressed – for the first time in my life – because I doubted if the children and young adults of today will be able to live with lesser financial, entertainment and travel opportunities, that will be inevitable if we want humankind to live further. It seems that the worldwide habit of sending them to visit their relatives, grandparents in the country – to live closer to nature – in their school holidays has been made impossible. It was a way for them to get to know a more normal way of life than given in cities; they could join and help in agricultural work. 
As I know that depression is not a solution for anything, I started thinking how to start new customs to supplement the old ones. I think it would be useful to make an organized habit of having children and young ones live and take care of elderly people — people thinking and otherwise more impaired than others at the same age as well — and of old people teaching and preparing them to survive and live wisely and happily under modest conditions.  
People taking care of thinking-wise impaired persons have a positive experience getting the patients to interact, live and take care of cats and dogs. It would be even better if they could live with kids, but the two of course are not mutually exclusive. We have to get over the idea brought to us by people considering themselves as liberals, that being individuals, taking into consideration everyone’s wishes, feelings and personal interests is the most important thing. This idea was a logical reaction to the old feudalistic approach where everyone was instructed to live according to the orders made divine by different religions and churches. It is true that lack of liberty sets back growth, because it oppresses all initiative. But as it turns out, a wholly individualistic society sets back growth just the same. The more crafty and lucky can create an order, where they influence the markets and become distinctly more wealthy and powerful than others – they control power and are able to tell others how and what to do.  I am convinced that in the – postindustrial – societies of the future, people with wealth and power above a limit should be obligated to use their resources and power in a way useful to all of humanity. One of the most important tasks for them is to organize the establishments allowing the living together of young and old people.
I would be very pleased if many people with cognitive impairment, professionals, activity directors, nurses, leaders of care-taker groups would read my ideas and helped me make them even more efficient.
Kappéter, István: Az emberiség képes jóra változtatni a világot [Humankind can change the world for the better]. 378 pages [19 pages English summary], Püski kiadó kft. H 1012 Budapest, Logodi u. 16.
ISBN: 963 9906 20 4
Kappéter, István: A konstruktív agresszió és a jövő formálása [Constructive aggression and forming the future]. 156 pages [4 pages English summary]
H 1012 Budapest, Logodi u. 16.
ISBN: 978 963 9592 47 6
Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Konrad Beyreuther: Alzheimer: 100 Years and Beyond (Research and Perspectives in Alzheimer's Disease)


Published on 07 September 2011
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