Sometimes I have ideas. (Don’t we all?) Sometimes I have ideas that I think to myself, ‘Why on earth hasn’t this been done yet?’ And to these amazing idea’s credit, some of them have. I get a strong sense of accomplishment when I find out I wasn’t the only one with a stroke of genius! Here are some that I’ve come up with:
Car Service + Salon
Every time I get my car serviced in a place where I’m bound to wait between 20 minutes and an hour and a half, I think about this. There are approximately 95134896745 other things on my list that I’d rather be doing, or taking care of, than sitting here. Why is every car service waiting area disgusting? Yeah, maybe they have a coffee machine, but I don’t want to drink coffee from a waiting area that’s managed by a person with perpetually oil stained hands. Thanks, but no thanks. And why is the TV always turned up just a smidgen too loud? To a movie I’d never in my life choose to watch? And why is everything always a little dirty? WELL: What if there were salon services offered here, with a few nail techs, a couple of pedicure booths, and a private room for waxing or threading? Depending on your wait, you could get the whole shebang, or at least get your eyebrows done, while you waited. How helpful would that be? Talk about two (or more) birds with one stone! Also, I’m sure I’m not alone when I say that I can count on one hand the amount of times I’ve seen a woman working under the hoods of cars when I’ve gotten my own vehicle serviced. In fact, as of one year ago, only 7.3% of car mechanics were women. You could go even one step further and make this a facility owned, operated and staffed exclusively by women. This could be a way to empower women in a variety of fields (and let’s be honest, I’m ALL ABOUT THAT) and bust that statistic at the same time!
Nursing Home + Preschool
I’ve seen more and more of this pop up lately, and it makes my heart soar. (<~I mean, JEEZZZZZZ if that doesn’t get you, I don’t know what will.) A lot of times, folks that are living in a nursing home are lonely. They might be missing a spouse, and their family might be far away, preventing them from regular visits, or they just might not have anyone left. For those of you not sure, a nursing home is where people go if they need more medical care than they can handle themselves, and assisted living facility encourages independence, and isn’t as equipped for more medical issues. WELL: What if you housed a preschool in the same building as a nursing home? That way, both the residents and children could have regular access to interact, engage and love on each other that might be their grandparent/children’s age. That way, too, the kids interact with people that don’t just look like them or their parents, but maybe grandparents, or even great grandparents. Have you seen older folks with little kids?? They come alive with a certain spunk that isn’t always seen otherwise, when interacting with their peers. I’m sure there’s been a study that links old folks playing with kids regularly to prolonging their health. Besides, age is just a number, isn’t it?? You’re only as old as you feel?
Assisted Living Facility + Animal Rescue
Again, housing an animal rescue in the same building as an ALF could be beneficial to both the residents of the ALF, and the animals. An ALF has more independent residents, so it makes more sense here, rather than a nursing home. There are significant studies done as to the benefits of therapy animals, and resident animals in ALF’s, so why not go one further, and motivate the older folks to help train a rescue animal to become a therapy animal? Talk about a sense of purpose!
Animal Rescue + Penitentiary
Why not house animal rescue in a penitentiary? For those of you not sure, a penitentiary or prison is where someone goes once they’ve been found guilty and given a sentence of usually a year or more for their crimes, jail is where folks are held while they wait to be convicted. Of course you’re looking for inmates who have been on good behavior, and would otherwise be given a job in the prison like laundry or meal distribution, janitorial work, etc. But who says they can’t help bathe, walk, feed, groom, or love animals? In fact, Indiana State Prison runs a Cat Adoption program for their inmates, and the staff at ISP has noticed that those hardened criminals who decide to adopt a cat are suddenly transformed, and given a reason to be better behaved. If they act out, their cat is taken away. (I’ve also seen that the cats adopted by inmates at ISP are NOT underfed…)
I know there are more pairings that make sense in the world that you’ve thought of, too. Share your ideas with me! I’d love to hear it.