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Opinion: Norwalk ACTS director’s weekly shout outs

Anthony Allison

Anthony Allison is the executive director of Norwalk ACTS. 

Shout Out to The Marvin’s intergenerational program Under One Roof, which is celebrating 20 years of enriching the lives of both seniors and preschool children by providing core services for living and learning. Based in East Norwalk, The Marvin is a national model, offering affordable housing and support services to 195 seniors who interact regularly with 3- and 4-year olds attending Marvin’s full-day school readiness preschool program, as well as 2nd and 4th graders who visit from Marvin Elementary School.

Research shows that intergenerational engagement benefits both groups, specifically in the areas of literacy and language development, cognition, social/emotional skills, and physical development.

One comment

Missy Conrad July 23, 2017 at 4:22 pm

More such housing is needed for Senior Citizens/Residents! One hundred ninety-five is not much for a municipality such a ours. Governor Malloy appointed a Housing Commissioner, & she commented that our state has not addressed affordable housing for almost three decades! All the talk of people leaving Connecticut does not mention that, mostly, they can not afford the housing! Rich & better-off people pay way less of their income on housing. The poorer people pay in the 50 percentiles for rental housing. The federal mortgage deduction, established after WWII to stimulate the building of housing for all the returning veterans, is being used by rich & better-off people on their homes, not at all the intent, & certainly not the Spirit, of the mortgage-deduction.
I used to observe for the League of Women Voters & later worked as a secretary for the South West Regional Planning Agency (SWRPA). Norwalk & Stamford, the cities, did not have anywhere near consistent, full representation of four each, but our neighbors, who had only two each, always had their full voice. The longtime Chair, who was from Darien, was against housing for Senior Citizens who had lived in Darien, but wanted to downsize. The multi-unit housing was planned for a site along the Post Road, US Route 1. Transportation was the focus of SWRPA’s work.
As a slow typist & a critical editor of the language of reports, I was let go from there, but soon went on to finish my college degree while my husband Jeff & my, our, son & daughter were in college themselves. I do hope that the new regional organizations will pay more attention to the need for affordable housing. Our state representatives & senators did just present a bill to Governor Malloy that would have weakened the requirement for all our municipalities to provide 10% affordable housing (while their homeowners take the federal mortgage deduction). Good Governor Malloy vetoed it.

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