Make Room @ The Table is an affinity group based in Chicago, Illinois. It was founded in July 2020. The members — social workers, academics, philanthropists, physicians, nurses, social science researchers, nonprofit CEOs and community leaders — are engaged in the field of aging.
Make Room @ The Table’s mission is to identify, share and develop strategies that will alleviate social isolation and loneliness for older people.
A subsidiary – Make Room @ The Table Digital – focuses on bridging the digital divide among older adults, particularly those with limited economic resources, as a way to mitigate social isolation and loneliness.
Make Room @ The Table functions as a clearing house – keeping track of established programs mitigating social isolation and loneliness for older adults and sharing this information with other organizations.
Additionally, Make Room @ The Table functions as a think tank, exploring innovative ways to foster social connectivity and incorporating them into creative strategies that organizations can implement to better serve their older clients who are alone.
Make Room @ The Table’s commitment to promoting social connectivity is illustrated by our creation of two Thanksgiving Lists in 2020: One List offered tips for folks celebrating a solo Thanksgiving. The other List was a compilation of suggestions for individuals and organizations on ways to make Thanksgiving brighter for people who would be home alone on the holiday.
Make Room @ The Table distributed these Lists free to organizations serving older people. The Thanksgiving Lists were displayed on websites and excerpted in newsletters. They were also profiled in the media and posted on Facebook. Make Room @ The Table plans to revise and update the Lists in 2021 to include suggestions not only for observing Thanksgiving at a table for one but also for celebrating a solitary Christmas…Hanukkah…Kwanzaa…and New Year’s Eve.