The 10 principles of the Eden Alternative ®:

  1. The three plagues of loneliness, helplessness, and boredom account for the bulk of suffering among our Elders.
  2. An Elder-centered community commits to creating a human habitat where life revolves around close and continuing contact with plants, animals, and children. These relationships provide the young and old alike with a pathway to a life worth living.
  3. Loving companionship is the antidote to loneliness. Elders deserve easy access to human and animal companionship.
  4. An Elder-centered community creates the opportunity to give and receive care. This is the antidote to helplessness.
  5. An Elder-centered community imbues daily life with variety and spontaneity by creating an environment in which unexpected and unpredictable interactions and happenings can take place. This is the antidote to boredom.
  6. Meaningless activity corrodes the human spirit. The opportunity to do activities we find meaningful is essential to human health.
  7. Medical treatment should be the servant of genuine human caring, never its master.
  8. An elder-centered community honors its Elders by de-emphasizing top-down bureaucratic authority, seeking instead to place the maximum possible decision-making authority into the hands of the Elders or of those closest to them.
  9. Creating an Elder-centered community is a never-ending process. Human growth must never be separated from human life.
  10. Wise leadership is essential for any struggle against the three plagues.