At retirement home, Venturing crew finds much more than a meeting place

Not many teenagers can say they spend time in a retirement home on a weekly basis. That is, unless they’re members of Crew 94 of Dover, Pa.

The crew meets every week at its chartered organization, Providence Place Senior Living. But the relationship between the crew and facility goes much deeper than merely providing a meeting place.

Crew-91-ResidentsIn fact, the crew involves residents in the first 30 minutes of its weekly meeting with arts and crafts activities and other projects, including setting up tents, tying knots and more.

“This normally turns into an hour event,” says Elizabeth Henry, acting president of the crew.

It all began with a conversation between Crew 94 Advisor Edward Harvey (an Eagle Scout and 30-year Scouting veteran) and his wife, Caitlin, who is an activities coordinator at a different retirement home.

“She told me that retirement communities are often looking to put together intergenerational activities for their residents and a Scouting unit could be a great source for these kind of activities,” he says.

Providence Place agreed to charter the new crew, and on Feb. 29, 2016, they made it official.

“Our goal is for the residents to ‘adopt’ us as grandchildren, and for us to ‘adopt’ them as our grandparents,” says Harvey.

So far, they’re off to a great start.

Elizabeth, 14, says one resident taught her how to “enjoy life to the fullest.” Another resident, an Eagle Scout, inspired her to pursue the Summit Award — Venturing’s highest honor.

“He proudly showed me his Eagle Scout ring and told me to be proud of all that I do in Scouting,” she says.

And this crew certainly has a lot to be proud of. Keep up the great work, Crew 94!