Grandfamilies in Gardens

Grants and Contracts Details


Although tremendous challenges face older adults who reside in rural locations, these communities often possess strengths that can be leveraged to buffer such problems. In rural central Appalachia, a region well known for its low socioeconomic status and poor health outcomes, notable community assets exist, including strong family ties, healthy traditions, and long standing, well-trusted community organizations such as faith groups and the Cooperative Extension Service. We propose to leverage these assets to address the most vulnerable segment of rural Appalachia, older adults (age 65+) who are raising their grandchildren (age 5+, when lifestyle habits begin to form). We aim to improve food security and mental and physical health among older adults by testing an intergenerational gardening program. Our research shows that vulnerable rural elders maintain a strong preference for improving the health of their families, not just themselves. This research would not be funded by other agencies, as more siloed or body organ institutions (i.e., American Heart Association, NIH/National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, etc.) do not typically consider intergenerational projects, food insecurity, or addressing multiple health problems within their purview.
Effective start/end date1/1/157/31/17


  • Retirement Research Foundation: $153,381.00


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