This volunteer-based friendly visitation program is committed to promoting health, independence, and self-advocacy for isolated elders. By facilitating intergenerational relationships between volunteers and elders, we increase the social contact, emotional support, and community connectedness of isolated seniors, all while providing more services for less money by effectively investing in human capital.
What we do… The Visiting Volunteer program provides companionship, outreach, and advocacy through the intergenerational relationships established between volunteers and elders. Our program services include:
•Identifying elders who are in need of socialization •Strengthening social support networks for isolated elders •Recruiting, screening, and training volunteers•Making successful, mutually beneficial matches between volunteers and elders•Educating volunteers and elders about available community resources •Providing frequent, on-going support to both volunteers and elders
Who can participate… Elders are eligible for services if they are at least 60 years of age, feel lonely or socially isolated, and live independently. Volunteers are welcome if they are over 18 years old and are willing to make a one-year commitment to visit an elder every week, for at least one hour at a time.
Primary Population Served
Aging, Elderly, Senior Citizens
Examples of our success in FY11 include:•6,400 volunteer hours were dedicated to the Visiting Volunteers program•Estimated value of volunteer time and in-kind support totaled $152,000 •95% of elders said their volunteer provided much needed emotional support•100% of volunteers said Visiting Volunteers provided a rich, rewarding experience