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Quote: Meals on Wheels are such a blessing to me. I appreciate everyone who helps make them possible – Juanita, Milton Quote: I don't have to worry anymore and Bill loves it. There couldn’t be a better place – for both of us. – Ursula, Pensacola Quote: There is no escaping aging issues. No one and no family is immune. If you or your family have not been affected, you will. Please give generously. C. Flack and Kathleen, Gulf Breeze Quote: I love being a Foster Grandparent. I almost fall to the ground every morning from the kids hugging me. - Queen, Pensacola Quote: Council on Aging of West Florida has been a big help to me. – Robert, Pensacola Quote: Thanks to the support groups, I know what is coming. Before, I didn’t. – Ray, Pace Quote: I volunteer with the Council on Aging of West Florida because I get a lot of satisfaction out of helping seniors, and making new friends! I feel we all need to help our senior citizens to 'pay back' what they have done for us in the past. – Ed, Pensacola

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The Way Forward is Giving Back February 16, 2017

Want to be more involved in the community, make friends, stay busy and go to bed knowing that you did something good? Few activities help as many people while enriching our own personal lives as volunteering. The best part is that you don't need to sacrifice a lot of time or even do something you do not particularly enjoy: Council on Aging of West Florida has a range of service outlets available for almost every time availability, many of which involve pursuits that fit nicely into whatever your existing hobby or interest may be.

Our clients are in need of everything from social interaction and food delivery to yard work, home maintenance and more. Enjoy meeting new people and learning? You may be great for The Retreat, where senior citizens are eager to chat and play with newcomers while sharing the wisdom of yesteryear. Or maybe you prefer to work with your hands? Our ramp team or yard maintenance team could use just a few hours of your time.

It is not just our clients who will thank you: research shows the volunteers themselves gain confidence, learn new skills, and report healthier, more consistent joy than those who do not give back in some way.

"Our volunteers are our partners, meeting the needs of our clients by preventing isolation and improving their quality of life," said Volunteer Program Manager Tricia Dixon. "Helping a senior increases socialization for both the senior and the volunteer. It impacts the community by bringing awareness to our elderly population by providing services such as Meal on Wheels delivery, friendly visitors and yard services."

Regardless of how you choose to apply yourself, Council on Aging depends on volunteers to help us serve our diverse and growing senior population. We need volunteers of all ages who are willing to give of their time, experience and skills to help us carry out our mission.

For more information on volunteering, call Tricia Dixon at (850) 432-1475.

 Here's some ways you can give back:

  • Delivering Meals on Wheels - Deliverers are needed. We offer convenient and flexible schedules for individuals, groups, church groups, civic clubs and employee volunteer programs.
  • Helping at our Adult Day Health Care Center - Our participants need, and enjoy, interaction. Teaching arts and crafts classes, helping with meals and snacks, assisting in the garden or just lending a smile and an ear can make their day.
  • Marketing and Community Events - Our marketing team is trained to enthusiastically and knowledgeably let our community know what we have to offer.
  • Performing Administrative Tasks - We also need help "behind the scenes." Making phone calls, filing and data entry are a few of the valuable ways you can help.
  • Participating in Fundraising Initiatives - We need assistance with fundraising. Organizing special events, soliciting sponsorships, and staffing events are important roles you can play.

 But don't just take our word for it. Here's what some volunteers have to say:

Haydee Seda: "I enjoy just talking to the clients. I click with them. Helping the staff, playing dominoes, improving their quality of life, making them happy - it's just a part of my life now. I relate to them and they relate to me. Volunteering at The Retreat has become like home to me."

Desiree Brantley: "I enjoy volunteering my services on my day off. It really is non-stop fun. Eldercare has been a passion of mine since my grandmother taught me the value of service. I want to carry her legacy forward in a continuous cycle of service that should really never end."

James Brown / Dan Krueger: "We've been building ramps for about 10 years. We come from a lot of different professions, but we're all neighbors helping neighbors. It's enjoyable to get in a group and help those who need it. There's nothing like a person looking up at you with freedom in their eyes. When we're done, they gain some independence. They can go out to the garden, and you can tell they're very grateful for the opportunity we've given them."

Bill Wein: "Volunteering to deliver Christmas gifts for Council on Aging has become an annual event at IMS ExpertServices that we look forward to. We deliver 120 or so gifts to those who are shut in, those who need someone to talk to, and those who need someone to make their day or season better. I am consistently humbled by how my team steps up and participates in this wonderful experience. Some of them even make friends."


Other Entries

Please help us provide seniors in Escambia and Santa Rosa counties with the programs and services they need to live healthy, safe and independent lives in their own familiar surroundings. These program and services, which include Meals on Wheels, adult day health care and caregiver support, enable seniors and their caregivers to face an uncertain future with the dignity they deserve.



Coming of Age TV See Past Interviews

Coming of Age Video

Looking for senior-related information online? Watch interviews with local experts on a variety of topics on our YouTube Channel. These segments from Coming of Age TV have been archived for convenience.

Learn More | YouTube

Are you 55? Or older and interested in helping a peer in their home or children in a learning environment?

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or Call (850) 432-1475

Coming of Age Magazine

Coming of Age Magazine is the only senior - oriented lifestyle publication in Northwest Florida. Locally produced and published in Pensacola, Florida by Council on Aging of West Florida in partnership with Ballinger Publishing.

Coming of Age Magazine

Summer 2018 - 6/22/2018
Coming of Age summer 2018

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