The Power of Silence: Lessons from Intergenerational Week


In this personal blog, Namrata Nad, a Master’s student of Risk Management and Insurance, details her positive experience volunteering for Intergenerational Week where she gained valuable lessons and insights from her partner in the story exchange.

It a day that will forever be etched in my memory. It was a remarkable day, a day when I volunteered for Intergenerational week. As someone who has always been close to my grandparents, I relish the company of elder people. The warmth, knowledge, and wisdom that they exude are things that cannot be found on Google or Chat GPT. Their stories, experiences, and life lessons are invaluable treasures that one can only get by spending time with them.

Graphic of cartoon people of different ages surrounding  a sign which reads

"Global Intergenerational week
24-30 April 2023

So, when I got the opportunity to volunteer for Intergenerational Week, I grabbed it with both hands. It was the best decision I made, and it came at the perfect time. Amidst the chaos of exams and assignments, this was a much-needed break, and it turned out to be more than just a break. It was a moment of enlightenment, a moment I will cherish forever.

As part of our chat session, my partner and I exchanged stories and experiences. It was a three-hour session that seemed like mere minutes. I enjoyed every moment of it, and I learned a lot from my partner. But the most profound lesson I learned came from him was when he said, “Silence has the greatest power. You don’t always have to talk. Just sit next to the person you love, your family or friend, and enjoy their company. The human mind has a great sense of understanding one’s behaviour and, in the end, we are all the same.”

It was a lesson that struck a chord in my heart. In a world where we are always busy, always talking, always trying to prove a point, we forget the power of silence. We forget that sometimes, the best thing we can do is just sit next to the people we love and enjoy their company.

But that was not all. One of the elders carried a black and white photo to show us as part of his story. It was a powerful reminder that sometimes, the most impactful things in life are not found in the world of smartphones and technology. They are found in the simplicity of a black and white photo, a reminder of a time gone by, a reminder of the things that truly matter.

This was a great initiative, and I personally believe that we all need it. We need to recognize that the best answers often come from the elder generation. We need to take the time to sit with them, listen to their stories, and learn from their experiences. We need to remember the power of silence and the impact of simple things.

Volunteering for Intergenerational week was more than just an opportunity to give back. It was an opportunity to learn, to grow, and to be reminded of the things that truly matter in life. It was an opportunity to connect with the elder generation, to appreciate their wisdom, and to be grateful for the lessons they teach us. I will always cherish the memories of yesterday.

Student Ambassador Profile card for Namrata Nad, a Master's in Risk Management and Insurance student from India living in Ireland. An artist and member of Art Limerick.

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