West Orange senior citizens give ‘Legacy of Love’ valentine to community youth

WEST ORANGE, NJ — It was a special Valentine’s Day in West Orange this year as senior citizens sent a virtual “Legacy of Love” inspirational greeting to community youth ages 13 to 18.

In a project conceived by West Orange Senior Services program coordinator Laura Van Dyke, seniors were asked to submit a brief statement based on their own life experiences that could encourage West Orange youth to see optimism and hope through challenges and hard times.

“We would like you to share with our youth how you managed through difficult times that felt nearly insurmountable — whether this involved living through historical wars, the Great Depression, civil unrest, the financial crisis, 9/11, or other personal obstacles and hardships,” Van Dyke asked of the seniors. “What strategies and coping mechanisms worked for you? How did you survive? What helped you to pull through? What important piece of advice would you have offered your teenage self? Impart your wisdom to help build more resilient youth.”

The result was a virtual booklet featuring advice from 17 senior citizens from the West Orange community that are sure to inspire all who read them.

View the booklet here.

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