The project will connect generations through letter-writing.
Domtar Press Release, February 8, 2016
The effort will connect generations through letter-writing. It will help youths develop fine motor skills, spur seniors to practice a useful cognitive exercise and give both groups a way to develop enjoyable and enriching connections.
Domtar tested the program in 2015 with a school and retirement community in Van Nuys, Calif. The idea, chronicled in a short video, was so successful that the groups wanted to continue writing letters even after the initial two-month program officially ended.
"Research about the benefits of handwriting shows why this program can be useful," said Paige Goff, Domtar's Vice President of Sustainability and Business Communications. "But besides the educational and cognitive benefits, Domtar is excited about how it will spark smiles and hugs for both children and senior citizens. You see that in the video, and we can't wait to see it at the new places where PaperPal will debut."
PaperPal will now expand to Wisconsin locations near a Domtar mill: Rothschild Elementary School, senior apartment community Birchwood Highlands and assisted living facility Stoney River. The program is also available to other facilities. To learn more about PaperPal or to receive a starter kit, please visit www.paperbecause.com/handwriting.
To understand more about the benefits of handwriting for different generations, consider the research and expert opinions cited in this Wall Street Journal article:
"Handwriting remains valuable for all ages, and it's especially useful when it connects senior citizens and students," Goff said. "We're excited that more schools and senior centers are joining PaperPal, because we know the results will be so positive."
Domtar is a leading provider of a wide variety of fiber-based products including communication, specialty and packaging papers, market pulp and absorbent hygiene products. With approximately 9,850 employees serving more than 50 countries around the world, Domtar is driven by a commitment to turn sustainable wood fiber into useful products that people rely on every day. Domtar's annual sales are approximately $5.3 billion and its common stock is traded on the New York and Toronto Stock Exchanges. Domtar's principal executive office is in Fort Mill, South Carolina. To learn more, visit www.domtar.com.