Youth Council of Pleasant Grove, Utah, chose a project designed to close the generation gap between community young people and senior citizens.
With the approval, support and encouragement of the Mayor and City Council, the students organized fund raising projects to provide a senior citizen banquet and entertainment. An essay writing contest, where hundreds of younger students wrote essays about grandparents, was organized at local elementary schools. Several hundred senior citizens personally received handwritten invitations to the banquet. Older Youth Council students and other volunteers provided transportation.
On a warm Saturday afternoon, over four hundred senior citizens shared dinner and a program of pre World War II music with the winners of the essay contest. Each winning young author read their essay. The students presented many awards to senior citizens for their long years of community service. Tears were shed, memories were revisited, friendships were established and a mutual respect was kindled between elementary school students the Youth Council and their 400 newly adopted grandparents.
After the banquet, the students found that they had a substantial amount of food left over. Instead of dividing it among themselves, they agreed to drive to Salt Lake City on the following day and join with other volunteer groups. On a cold, rainy Sunday morning, they helped feed breakfast to over 500 homeless men, women and children under a freeway overpass.