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Bridging the generation gap


Frances Wilson, a retiree, holds a baby named Elijah in her arms as she waits for their turn to play a game called "What's in the sock?" Both are grinning.

            Wilson and Elijah are part of Generations, a care center at 234 Coldwater Road in Gates. Its special twist: Kids and elders are cared for at the same facility, so both can enjoy each other's company. Employees of Generations, among other things, oversee operations and plan activities.

            Wilson worked in daycare for years, and says she missed the kids after she retired. Ask her how she likes spending time at Generations, and she glows.

            "It's what I was missing when I got where I couldn't work," she explains. "It's beautiful. Everybody's a big family."

            Each of Rochester's four Generations centers is a childcare facility, and the Gates center has on-site elder care.

            At the Highland Avenue and Stenson Street centers in Rochester, as well as the West Avenue center in Fairport, elders aren't on-site all the time. They are transported to Generations from local nursing homes to participate in activities like games, crafts, and reading with the kids.

            According to Eve Moses, executive director of elder care at the Gates center, the "little ones" love the "Grammas" and "Grandpas" they interact with every day. The centers help bring back the extended family we've lost over the years, she says. And the low-functioning seniors at Generations help kids understand disabilities and teach them to be "better citizens."

            And, she says, the kids thrive on the extra care they're given. "For the kids, it's extra attention, which is what everybody needs nowadays," Moses says.

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--- Jennifer Weiss

Colgate update

Students and faculty at Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, along with community members, are continuing to discuss with Colgate Rochester administrators the details of the upcoming library merger.

            The deal will transfer a large portion of books from the Ambrose Swasey Library to the Rush Rhees Library at the University of Rochester. Colgate Rochester's Board of Trustees will vote June 15 on contracts being drawn up by both sides.

            Christine Wenderoth, director of the Swasey Library, has proposed to retain two more librarians and almost twice the number of books as compared to the suggestions drafted by the administration. She also hopes the transition will be slower, which might mean retaining other staff members for six to 12 months.

            The Riverbank Community --- a group of Colgate Rochester students, alumni, religious and community leaders, and laypeople --- has offered a proposal of its own.

            The essence of the proposal: to lease the operation of the library for a year, and then buy it over time. According to community member Tobias Pinckney, the group hopes to establish a "Save the Library for a Year" campaign. Through the campaign, churches throughout the country would be asked to purchase shelves and ranges (vertical units) for donations of $100 to $500.

            See the mail for a letter to the editor from Swasey Library Director Christine Wenderoth.

RIJF schedule

There's been a change to the performance times for vocalist Curtis Stigers during the Rochester International Jazz Festival. Stigers now plays at 6 and 10:15 p.m. on Monday, June 7, at the RIJF Big Tent at Main and Gibbs Streets. To accommodate the switch, the Dave Rivello Ensemble will play at 8:30 p.m. on June 7 at the Big Tent.