This society's adolescent and elderly populations share many needs and characteristics. Both often have little access to meaningful social roles. For example, neither is likely to be fully integrated into the work force and, consequently, both groups tend to have high rates of unemployment (Pearl, 1978; Sheppard, 1976). Moreover, their family roles tend to be in transition. Teenagers are ·in the process of gaining independence from their parents while many older adults face changes such as the loss of a spouse or decreased family power relative to their middle-aged children. The lack of meaningful social roles has been blamed for youthful antisocial behavior (Greenberg, 1977) as well as for increased mental illness among the elderly (Clark & Anderson, 1967).
Cherry, Debra L.; Benest, Frank R.; Gates, Barbara; and White, Joanne, "Intergenerational Service Programs: Meeting Shared Needs of Young and Old" (1985). Special Topics, General. 17.