Solidarity Across Generations is Critical for Building Stronger, More Cohesive Communities, A New Survey Finds

WASHINGTON, May 15, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Generations United and The Eisner Foundation will release survey findings in the new report I Need You, You Need Me: The Young, the Old, and What We Can Achieve Together on May 16 at the National Press Club in the Holeman Lounge, 9:00am to 10:30am in Washington, DC. The Eisner Foundation will also honor New York-based nonprofit DOROT with The Eisner Prize for Intergenerational Excellence at the event, with journalist and political analyst Juan Williams as emcee. 

Ninety-three percent of U.S. adults agree that children and youth benefit from building relationships with elders in their communities; 91 percent agree that elders benefit from these relationships as well, according to the new survey and report from Generations United and The Eisner Foundation. The survey, conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Generations United and The Eisner Foundation in February among over 2,000 U.S. adults, also found that 78 percent of adults seem to be so convinced that the young and the old are good for one another that they think the federal government should invest in programs that bring together young and old Americans.

“When the generations don’t mix, they’re less likely to care and invest in each other,” Donna Butts, executive director of Generations United. “We’re proud to partner with The Eisner Foundation, which through its grant-making builds stronger communities that bridge the generations.”

The report highlights this year’s Eisner Prize for Intergenerational Excellence-winner DOROT and others as national examples of pioneers reuniting the generations and making their communities better places to live. For four decades, DOROT has provided services to seniors in New York City to combat isolation and the associated health consequences. With a name meaning “generations” in Hebrew, DOROT’s creative intergenerational programs activate younger generations to ensure that their clients have access to the resources they need to age with dignity, independence, and grace.

“It is such an incredible honor to receive the 2017 Eisner Prize for Intergenerational Excellence,” said Mark Meridy, Executive Director of DOROT. “We are passionate about our mission of addressing social isolation by bringing the generations together in a meaningful and impactful manner. Everyone at DOROT is grateful to the Eisner Foundation for highlighting the importance of intergenerational programming.”

“The Eisner Prize for Intergenerational Excellence allows us to shine a light on exceptional organizations that bring together the older and younger generations,” said Michael Eisner, founder of The Eisner Foundation. “DOROT’s intergenerational programs designed to alleviate social isolation in older adults are compassionate and commendable and so worthy of national recognition.”

Taking inspiration from the survey findings and featured organizations like DOROT, the report highlights inventive, intergenerational solutions and actionable ways to harness the benefits of connecting generations. They include:

  • Lobby your local government to make age integration a core value
  • Call on organizations that serve the young to collaborate with those that serve the old
  • Challenge your local board of education to integrate elders into every school
  • Urge local foundation to support intergenerational programs

The full report is available at  

To schedule an interview with one of our experts, contact Alan King at or Chelsea Mason at Experts available for comment include:

  • Donna Butts, executive director, Generations United
  • Michael Eisner, founder of The Eisner Foundation
  • Trent Stamp, CEO of The Eisner Foundation

About Generations United: For nearly three decades, Generations United has been the catalyst for policies and practices stimulating cooperation and collaboration among generations, evoking the vibrancy, energy and sheer productivity that result when people of all ages come together. We believe that we can only be successful in the face of our complex future if generational diversity is regarded as a national asset and fully leveraged. The National Center on Grandfamilies is a critical part of Generations United’s mission and strives to enact policies and promote programs that support relative caregivers and the children they raise.

About The Eisner Foundation: The Eisner Foundation identifies, advocates for, and invests in high-quality and innovative programs that unite multiple generations for the betterment of our communities. The Eisner Foundation was started in 1996 by Michael D. Eisner, then-Chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, and his wife Jane in order to focus their family’s philanthropic activities. The Eisner Foundation gives an estimated $7 million per year to nonprofit organizations based in Los Angeles County. In 2015, The Eisner Foundation became the only U.S. funder investing exclusively in intergenerational solutions. To learn more about The Eisner Foundation, please visit the organization’s website at

About the Survey:
The Generations United/Eisner Foundation survey was conducted online by Harris Poll February 15-17 among 2,171 U.S. adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Emily Patrick, Project Manager, at


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SOURCE Generations United

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