Who is this program for?
Are you interested in writing a story about your legacy, and sharing that story with other generations? Then this program is for you! The mission of Legacy Letters is to create connections across generations through writing and sharing stories from our lives.
What is this program?
Legacy Letters is a free community program offered through the Goldsen Institute at the University of Washington School of Social Work (see more about research at this link). Each program welcomes 4-6 younger adults and 4-6 older adults and lasts 6 weeks. Once a week, we gather for 90 minutes at one of our Seattle locations. Locations include the Southeast Seattle Senior Center, Esperanza House Apartments, the UW Campus, the UW Memory Hub, and various Seattle Public Schools. Learn more about programs and locations at our calendar.
Over the course of the program, participants are guided through writing a Legacy Letter using one of our Focus Questions:
- As you think of your life story, what would you like others to know about you?
- What have been the most life changing times that have led to who you are today?
- What words of wisdom or questions would you like to share with other generations?
What can I expect?
Each session includes a guided journaling exercise, discussion, and group activities. We have found that group conversations inspire writing, and writing inspires further conversation and relationship-building. Each session is an opportunity to share your story, hear the stories of others, and enjoy a community experience. Everyone gets to choose what they share during the program.
How do I participate?
The only requirement for participation is an interest in engaging with an intergenerational community. If you are interested in participating, please register at this link, or send an email with a sentence about your interest to our Legacy Letters Program Coordinator at AgePrideCenter@UW.edu.
What do we expect from participants?
In order to for everyone to fully enjoy the Legacy Letters experience, participants are encouraged to attend all sessions. We encourage participants to silence their cell phones during program sessions to ensure that everyone has a chance to be heard. Participants are expected to show respect and compassion with each other, and to engage thoughtfully with program activities.
Will you share my story with others?
With permission, we may anonymously use quotes from your Legacy Letter in materials that we share with the public to spread the word about the program. These materials may include advocacy for intergenerational connection and programming. We may also use quotes and reflections on the program in research publications about successful intergenerational programs.
Will I have the opportunity to share my Legacy Letter?
Yes! During the final session of the program, everyone has an opportunity to read their Legacy Letter aloud. We also host seasonal Legacy Community Reunions to connect the larger community as well as their friends and family. Past participants are invited to share their Letters at these events. Please make sure to register your interest in the program to stay informed about our upcoming events.
What if I want to stop participating?
Your participation is voluntary. We do our best to create a safe and welcoming space for everyone. If you have concerns related to your participation, please let us know by calling or emailing our center.
Who do I contact with questions?
Please contact AgePrideCenter@UW.edu for any questions or for assistance with any and all concerns.