Piecing It Together: What We Know About the Funding Puzzle for Spaces that Connect Young and Old

This paper aims to share what we currently know about funding and financing intergenerational shared sites, their potential cost-savings, and recommendations to guide our work and that of the field to pave the way to increase shared site development around the country.

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Intergenerational shared sites – places and spaces that serve and together engage younger and older people – are the type of care facility most Americans say they want for their loved ones and themselves. Yet only about one in four know of a site in their community. Why are there so few when interest is so high?

Building upon 20 years of leading the shared site field (and more than 30 years of supporting quality intergenerational programs and policies) Generations United tackled this question with the support of The Eisner Foundation. Working with Dr. Shannon Jarrott at The Ohio State University on a national survey of shared site practitioners, we found funding and financing shared sites as one of the top barriers cited. Whether trying to sustain an existing program or in the planning phase for a new site, the complexity of potential funding sources – and not knowing where to begin – become daunting barriers.

As a beginning point, we gathered information from our most recent signature reports created in partnership with The Eisner Foundation. We also included a more in-depth analysis of the data on cost and funding sources from the 2018 national survey conducted by Dr. Jarrott and information from interviews with program providers.