Mary L.

Magical Intergenerational Moments

mary lamkeThere are some who say that what transpires in Bridges Together programs is, well, magical! When we watched what happened to Mary at the January Lunch, Learn and Network at the Treehouse Foundation, we all had to agree.

Mary L. has been a volunteer in and served as volunteer coordinator of the Bridges programs in Dalton, Massachusetts. She came to the Lunch, Learn and Network to expand her knowledge of Bridges, but she also admitted later she’d had a strong unexplained feeling she should “just attend.”

Upon arriving, Mary met the Treehouse founder, Judy Cockerton. Mary shared that she has been a foster mom for dozens of years. She continued on to say how more than ten years ago, she had adored and nurtured a pair of sisters for more than two years, but then, with the hope of a “forever placement,” they’d left her home. Mary had tried to find them for many years but, due to privacy rules, could not. Judy asked what their names were, and Mary told her.

Surprise of all surprises: the girls lived right there, at Treehouse! Judy and her fabulous team contacted their current foster mom and arranged for a reunion right then and there. Lots of smiles and joyous tears flowed between all of us as we witnessed the magic of the moment!

Mary reflects… “ I came home to tell my husband the news, and we shed tears of joy.” She has contacted others who were involved in the girls’ lives at the time: their teachers, Girl Scout leader, and school friends. Mary is planning a party to reunite everyone this summer.

We at Bridges Together are so grateful to be journeying with Mary. She began as a Bridges volunteer at a parochial school in the early 2000s, and then decided to help coordinate the volunteers. She has worked with Andrea Weaver, Bridges Together’s executive director, to bring Bridges programs to the regional public middle school, and hopes to implement a program soon in the public elementary school.

Bridges Together is uniting like-minded people who are committed to fostering intergenerational opportunities! The results of those gatherings are transformative. Join us and see! And if you have an intergenerational story like Mary’s to share, please contact us at


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