Volunteer Opportunities for Older Adults

Older Americans Month logoMay is Older Americans Month, where we celebrate the achievements and capabilities of older adults in our community. To celebrate, Morris County is highlighting events and volunteer opportunities for older adults! Read on to find local non-profits looking for volunteers, and hear stories from older volunteers in our community.

Follow us throughout the month of May on our Facebook page to learn more about Older Americans Month!

Organizations

DAWN Center for Independent Living

DAWN Center for Independent Living is a non-profit agency that empowers people with disabilities who strive to take control of their own lives by providing tools, early intervention services, promoting public awareness, and offering opportunities and experiences. Each year, DAWN helps more than 3,000 individuals.

DAWN is looking for volunteering to help with administrative work, assistance at fundraising and community events, and light maintenance work.

nterested in volunteering at DAWN? Contact Volunteer Coordinator Janine Mellini at [email protected] or by calling her at 973-625-1940.

Interfaith Food Pantry

The Interfaith Food Pantry is a community of neighbors helping neighbors committed to ending hunger and supporting self-sufficiency. Through our community partners we provide food, education and resources to inspire confidence and hope to Morris County families in need.

The IFP is looking for volunteers to assist with mailings (4x per year), food distribution during the evenings and people with culinary expertise to assist in preparing meals for our Kitchen 2 Table program.

Visit their website to apply to volunteer!

Morris County Nutrition Project/Meals on Wheels

The Morris County Nutrition Project – Meals On Wheels currently operates 15 Nutrition Sites. They provide hot nutritious meals, education, and personal interaction through Congregate Meals, Home Delivery Meals, and Weekend Meals.

Interested volunteers can help with packing, delivering, and serving meals. They help packing meals, goody bags, serve lunch to the congregates and some may want to deliver the meals depending on the route. If you want to make a difference in the lives of seniors, this is a great opportunity!

Sign up to volunteer at NORWESCAP’s website.

Skylands RSVP Volunteer Resource Center of NORWESCAP

The Skylands RSVP Volunteer Resource Center of NORWESCAP provides opportunities for individuals 55 and over to make a difference in their communities through volunteer service.

RSVP volunteers serve in a variety of opportunities including: Medicare Counseling, Income Tax Preparation, Health and Wellness program leadership, Friendly Visiting, Telephone Reassurance and Money Management assistance. They also recruit and place volunteers for over 50 other non-profit agencies.

The only requirement? You need to be over 55 to apply!

To become an RSVP volunteer, simply call 973-784-4900 or email [email protected]. You can also go to NORWESCAP’s website at www.norwescap.org.

United Way of Northern New Jersey

The United Way of Northern New Jersey believes believe that improving life for all starts with improving life for the growing number of individuals and families who are working, but are unable to afford the basic necessities of housing, food, child care, health care, and transportation. They focus on three areas – education, income, and health – to help those individuals achieve a better and more stable future.

In the fall, United Way recruits volunteers to become IRS-certified tax preparers. No experience is necessary. Not good with numbers? No problem! There are many other opportunities to get involved in tax season – greet clients and assist with necessary paperwork, provide translation services, help residents find additional community services that may be available to them, and offer administrative support.

For more information about joining the free tax preparation team, call 973-993-1160, x529.

Volunteer Stories

EgW, an older volunteer in Morris County, is currently working with 4 organizations – the VNA of New Jersey, Interfaith Food Pantry, Morristown Medical Center, and Village Angels of Tanzania.  “I have always wanted to help others, but during my working career, there was no time. I live in Morris county and commuted to NYC, Princeton, etc. So when I retired, I knew what I wanted to do — I wanted to give of myself to help others. We all have different talents and skills, sharing them with others makes this world a better place!”

Robert F. of Long Valley volunteers for the Boy Scouts, and has been involved since his oldest son joined the Scouts 33 years ago. He’s also involved with Literacy Volunteers for America, where he teaches classes in beginner and intermediate conversational English for non-native people from all over the world. “I admire each of my students who show up to class each week to work on improving their understanding of the English language…I’m very proud to have been a part of Scouting for as long as I have and seeing many boys benefiting from the leadership and life skills they learn from Scouting.”

Frieda of Lake Shawnee has been volunteering for 4 years. She helps out at the Morris Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Randolph, and is an annual volunteer at the Tour de Farm bicycle tour in Warren and Sussex counties. She also helps sort food at the Community Food Bank!I thoroughly enjoy helping and interacting with people and bringing some happiness to others. ReStore gives me the opportunity to help the organization…helping customers to thoroughly enjoy their Restore experience!”

Kim L. Grieder has been volunteering since 2012. She teaches line dancing, canasta and mah jongg at a number of area senior centers! Recently, she’s gotten involved with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program, after 30 years of working for the IRS. “Tax Aide is very important as it offers free tax preparation to anyone who would like free tax help or advice. The Internal Revenue has discontinued the tax preparation service and Tax Aide is the only organization in this country that offers Citizens and Non-citizens free Tax Law and Preparation.”

Lorraine Lawn, an older volunteer from Boonton, volunteers with Healthy Bones, a local church group, and the RV Garden Club, where she helps clean up Morris County’s Tourne Park. She also drives friends to stores and doctor’s appointments! “It helped me so much to be out of the house answering the phone and doing computer work. It helped so much with my loneliness. I needed this volunteer work as much as they needed me…I live in a small Town and knew a lot of people but have met many more through volunteering.”

Elaine Marchese has been volunteering for over 35 years! She delivers Meals on Wheels and cooks meals for her church’s food pantry. She began volunteering “because I realized there is a need to give back to the community and because I am a caretaker by heart.” She loves to volunteer – “Many organizations could not survive without the help of volunteers. Without volunteers, the organization may have to cut back on its services… Volunteering is the most gratifying thing you can do for yourself and your fellow man. I love it and will continue as long as I can.”

Ron Prosperi began volunteering upon his retirement in 2012. He currently does patient transport for Saint Clares and Robert Wood Johnson, works with children with cerebral palsy at the Horizon School, prepares information boxes for the Morris Museum, and does administrative work for Atlantic Health Hospice. “I started volunteering in order to give something back to the community. I have been very blessed in my life and was anxious to help less fortunate people and help organizations that care for people in need…Volunteers make a huge difference at these organizations by helping to make the staff more efficient. ”

Leroy Varga is 92 years old, and has been a volunteer for 30 years! He’s involved in the VITA program and the Dover Child Care Center. He began his volunteer career as a Boy Scout at age 11, and served as a scoutmaster from 1950 until 1980. Why does Leroy volunteer? “I love helping groups that are doing good to my community.”