My name is Mollie Rawnsley, and I have set up a unique project aimed at bringing together two very different, yet equally interesting generations. As part of a new initiative, entitled Letters to Our Grandchildren, I am asking those aged 65+ to write letters addressed to younger people in their lives aged 18-35. It is my goal to then compile these letters into a moving and thought-provoking book that will engage young people and connect them with an older generation.
Letters To Our Grandchildren is directed at bringing together two generations that currently have been pulled apart by cultural stereotypes. It is my hope that by compiling a collection of letters written by those aged 65+, that young people may develop a better understanding of their older counterparts. This seems particularly important in present times, when mistreatment of the elderly is rife in our society, a problem exasperated by the fact that the proportion of older people is growing at an increasing rate.
I launched the project last month and have since attracted the attention of a number of newspapers, as well as the BBC, who excitingly, are coming to film an interview with me about the project this week. To give a few more details, the letters should include words of advice about a specific life topic (some suggestions are listed at the bottom of this article) and should be a maximum of 1 side of A4 paper (small to medium handwriting or size 12 font).
The inspiration for this project came from frustration. I think we, the young, can often express such contemptuous and patronising behaviour towards the elderly which I find very sad and such a great shame. I believe that our generation has been brought up in a culture that doesn’t encourage us to always appreciate the wisdom that older people have to offer and we therefore take those older individuals around us for granted. I wanted to find a way of addressing this by making a more engaging and interesting way for young people to connect with this issue and to better understand their elderly friends and family. I am passionate in the belief that this project could really connect two very remarkable and passionate generations in a completely unique and exciting way.
Suggested topics for letters:
- How to find happiness in life
- The importance of family and/or friends
- How to find lasting love
- How to cope with loss
- Hopes for a future world
Please note these are merely suggestions, writers are more than welcome to write about a topic of their choice.
If you are interested in taking part, or feel like you might know someone who might like to write to you, please get in touch either via e-mail or by following the project on Instagram @letters_to_our_grandchildren.
14th January 2020