Intergenerational Guidance

About intergenerational activities

HCPA have created and implemented intergenerational practice across Hertfordshire. It aims to support service providers with setting up links with children services to bridge the intergenerational gap throughout the county and become a staple of care within Hertfordshire. 

Intergenerational practice is vital to our ageing population today as younger and older people are becoming increasingly disconnected due to the breakdown of community services.

Our intergenerational practice aims to promote well-being by building on relationships, shifting negative attitudes around ageing, and improving community cohesion between younger and older people.  

This practice also addresses loneliness and anti-social behaviour, which is commonly experienced with those who are older. 

Intergenerational practice can be any activity that brings together people of any generation.

At HCPA, we trialled our Chair Based Exercise programme as our form of intergenerational activity. The 10 weeks of regular exercise provided the residents time to improve their strength and mobility as well as develop relationships with the children involved; consistency is key to building and bonding friendships between those who are younger and older. 

From our 10-week trial, we have seen significant improvements in behaviour, grip strength, and overall well-being. 

People living with Dementia show a distinct change to their behaviour when they are being engaged through Intergenerational Practice.

Our success so far

Our Chair Based Exercise programme, which is our form of intergenerational practice, has found that engagement between the different generations has been incredibly positive. Residents were thoroughly engaged throughout the sessions and residents living with dementia did not exhibit the same levels of cognitive disorientation as before.

Confidence also improved considerably with the residents that many were able to walk unaided and felt as though they had a purpose to get up in the morning. For instance, one eager resident was regularly washed, dressed, and ready an hour before the children were due to arrive for their exercise sessions.

With such positive changes in behaviour, intergenerational practice truly emphasises how important engagement and stimulation is to residents as well as highlights the exercise benefits of improved strength, mobility, confidence, and overall health. Any activity that encourages engagement between different generations strongly indicates a positive change in behaviour, thus, improving the residents’ quality of living and confidence. 

‘It’s very relaxing having the children here, you wouldn’t think it!’

‘I wouldn’t have any more of my own, but I love them being here’


For older adults

Friendship forming and a greater feeling of connection with other residents
A potential decline in blood pressure
A reduced feeling of loneliness
A newfound sense of purpose
Well-being support
A noticeable increase in confidence
Improved fitness and mobility
Developing a range of new skills

For children

Increased understanding and compassion towards others
Improved relationships with own older relatives
Confidence building
Empathy strenghtening
Friendship forming
Developing a range of new skills

How can you get started?

Step 1

Start by having a planning group with your team to discuss how many participants you’d like to host and when and where you would like to have the sessions. Think about your aims and objectives for including intergenerational practice at your organisation. Ensuring these are in place will help you achieve the best results.

Step 2

Once you have completed your planning stage, you will need to organise the participants to come into your organisation. If you are unsure of how to start an intergenerational group, please get in touch so we can link you up with family services.

Step 3

Once a link has been established, it is important to have a Service Level Agreement in place to show that each party is fully committed to the project. In addition to this agreement, it is important to complete a full Risk Assessment to make sure that the environment is safe for all participants.


Downloadable resources include a Service Level Agreement, a Risk Assessment, and an intergenerational practice tool kit.

The resources below are to be used to protect yourself while undertaking Chair Based Exercise classes. It is important that you have the documents as evidence to show that the correct paperwork has been completed.

Service Level Agreement: Use this Service Level Agreement to help create a long-term approach and establish a mutual understanding of expectations between both parties involved.

Risk Assessment: Use this Risk Assessment resource to make sure that the space used for intergenerational practice is safe and secure for your activities and all participants involved.

Ideas for your intergenerational activities




Arts & Crafts

Digital Skills

Music & Dance


Reading Groups


Baby & Toddler Groups

Build your case study

Building a case study is important so that you can see the impact of your session. It is helpful to write down the things that went well and the lessons learnt to be able to improve on them.

Use the diary resource to help you note down your weekly observations using the STAR system


  • What happened during the intergenerational session?
  • What activity/activities did you do?
  • How many children were involved/present?
  • How many adults were involved/present?


  • What was your task and what did you want to achieve?


  • What did you do to achieve your aim?


  • What was the end result?
  • What were your lessons learnt?

Send us your case studies and pictures!

We want to promote you and your home!

If you are interested in working with us to help set up your intergenerational links, please fill out the below interest form and we will be in touch.

Got a question?

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