Connecting generations at community workshop

Today, we held our first community event, a Senior Memory Collection Workshop with the Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute (JCI). Families and volunteers spent a wonderful afternoon “talking story” with seniors of Japanese ancestry, and preserving their stories in memory books. 

With live Hawaiian music and ono snacks generously donated from local restaurants, the room soon became filled with the sounds of storytelling: bright laughter, solemn reminiscing, and wise words echoed everywhere. Student volunteers from South High School’s AP Japanese class even got to practice their language skills with the seniors.

72-year-old Mr. Sakata attended the workshop with his young granddaughter. As a child, he explained, he hated eating shrimp. At this, the granddaughter laughed and exclaimed, “Grandpa, I hate shrimp too!” They quickly discovered their likes and dislikes run in the family!

Overall, we were excited to see the local community come together to provide companionship and social interaction with the elderly. This experience opened my eyes to the potential of the Let’s Talk Story Club to impact more seniors communities in the future.

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