Coffee Corner Connections

Meadowlark Hills Retirement Community 2013

Meadowlark Hills is a retirement community in Manhattan, KS. I brought 25 pairs of mugs to Meadowlark Hills for residents to drink coffee from during their weekly “Coffee Corner” event. Independent living and assisted living residents were invited, with a special invitation going out to new residents with the goal of connecting strangers living under the same roof. When residents entered the community room they choose a patterned button with different ceramic surfaces and one of my handmade mugs to drink their coffee from. The patterned buttons were made in pairs, and the residents found the person whose button matched their own. The first conversation starter with their new friend was to share about an object that was meaningful to them. After about 20 minutes of conversation they found their next partner by matching the color of the handle on their mug. This conversation was prompted by sharing about anyone in their family that they would choose to have coffee with. The goal in this activity was for residents to connect with people they might not otherwise talk to and build the community at Meadowlark.