CircleTalk engages older adults in meaningful conversations using creative activities to inspire personal sharing, a sense of belonging, and a feeling of community. By reviving spirit, vitality, and joy in a comfortable group setting, we alleviate and sometimes eliminate the feelings of loneliness and isolation often experienced by older adults. CircleTalk offers a curriculum-specific, dedicated program that builds social connectedness among older adults that allows them to flourish within their community.
Person-to-person connection is what matters most to all of us. As older adults leave their homes, friends and communities of a lifetime and move into the security of a senior residence, inevitably, they lose these important connections and rarely have a chance to let other people know what really matters to them and who they were in life and who they continue to be. We have field-tested this method of engagement in senior residences for over 200 hours. It has been praised by CircleTalk members and professionals. High resident engagement and satisfaction levels have been observed and reported by CircleTalk leaders, facility personnel and residents themselves. Follow-up satisfaction surveys and interviews (conducted by an external evaluator) have consistently rated the CircleTalk model as very desirable, engaging and pleasurable. The results also speak for themselves:
Last week we asked our Community Circle the following question : “What is the most beautiful thing you have ever seen?” The responses were full of heart and good memories: Looking into the eyes of my children at birth. Seeing the Grand Canyon for the first time. My great grandchild's smile the first time I met him!
As the circle came around to Francis, our eldest member (95), she gazed into her hands for a few moments, took a deep breath and thoughtfully responded “Walking into this group each week and seeing that you expected me here. That's beautiful to me.”
Funded by Boulder, CO (July 2015)