WSSU in conjunction with 20 community organizations to partner in opening state-of-the-art center
The Intergenerational Center for Arts and Wellness (Generations Center), a state-of-the-art community center, will hold its ribbon cutting and open house on Friday, Nov. 17, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 114 West 30th Street, Winston-Salem. The Generations Center is a collaboration between Winston-Salem State University (WSSU), Senior Services, of Forsyth County, two major healthcare providers, and 17 additional established nonprofit organizations that have joined forces with the shared purpose of bringing generations together to create meaningful engagement.
This is a unique, one-of-a-kind collaboration that may serve as a national model for how to best serve aging adults and communities at large.
The WSSU School of Health Sciences (SOHS) is a dedicated space collaborator in the new Generations Center. Its space will house several specialty clinics currently offered by the SOHS in and around East Winston and surrounding areas that provide health and preventive care services and programming for the underserved population.
The health professions programs of the SOHS received $1,342,840 in funding through Rep. Kathy Manning’s community funding project appeal for capital clinical equipment and other equipment/supplies to outfit the new WSSU health services space, said Dr. Cynthia Bell, professor and chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy.
According to Bell, WSSU’s space at the Generations Center will encompass more than 6,700 square feet of indoor space and an additional 2,100 square feet of outdoor therapy space. The indoor area will have a full apartment-like suite for daily living activities, a large open gym-like area with exercise equipment, three private treatment rooms, a partial mock grocery store, a driving/car simulator, a coordinator’s office and several storage areas for the therapy equipment.
The outdoor space includes a mobility garden that features a variety of surfaces and terrains, a ramp, stairs, raised planters, benches, a mailbox, and a gazebo structure for shade and socialization, she said.
The goal is to expand the health services offered to meet the needs of the community while providing experiential learning for WSSU SOHS students in a state-of-the-art facility, Bell said.
Faculty and licensed personnel will supervise students in the clinical services provided.
“This is an amazing new opportunity to engage with other community partners and agencies under one roof to benefit our students and members of the Winston-Salem community,” Bell said. “The Generations Center will serve as an incubator for interprofessional collaboration, scholarship, and education opportunities.”
Through an innovative intergenerational and arts-based approach, the Generations Center will provide activities, programming, and creative collaborative endeavors that have a proven ability to stimulate and benefit people of all ages. The Generations Center is being built on the existing campus of Senior Services and surrounded by some of the city’s most historically underserved neighborhoods.
Construction of the 62,500-square-foot Generations Center began in June 2022.
In addition to WSSU, other collaborating organizations include: Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist J. Paul Sticht Center for Healthy Aging and Rehabilitation; Family Services (child development center); HandsOn NWNC; Hispanic League; Novant Health; Sawtooth School for Visual Art; Second Harvest’s Providence; and Senior Services’ Elizabeth and Tab Williams Adult Day Center.
Organizations using shared spaces include Senior Services’ Senior Lunch program; Arts Council of Winston-Salem; a/perture; Authoring Action; Cancer Services; 40+ Stage Company; Maya Angelou Center for Health Equity; SECCA; Shepherd’s Center of Greater Winston-Salem; Trellis Supportive Care; ImPROVement; UNC School of the Arts; and the Winston-Salem Symphony.