Senior Solutions encourages volunteering

SPRINGFIELD, Vt. – People from every economic, religious, ethnic, racial, environmental, and educational background have come to feel the effects of the stress of the Covid-19 epidemic. Add to that the strain of a contentious election season and the emotional overload has become very burdensome. Our health is easily impacted by this stress. It helps all of us appreciate the situational isolation of our older Vermonters.

To become more positive there are many things we all can to. Stay connected through our devices like phones and the internet. Send cards and notes to far away loved ones. Drop off a casserole or dessert to a neighbor. Now is a great time to do things we never had time for during our regular lives. Go through the boxes of old photos that have never been sorted. How about learning to play a musical instrument, learn a new language, or take up some artistic project? Exercise is also a wonderful positive action we can do for ourselves. Taking a walk costs nothing and you can pace yourself and do as little or as much as you are comfortable with.  Another idea is to volunteer. Volunteering helps others and, as we have learned, it improves the health and mental attitude of the volunteer.

Call the Senior Solutions Help Line at 802-885-2669 and ask about our volunteer activities. We have very impactful visitor programs in Windham and Windsor counties. Our Friendly Visitor and the Vet-to-Vet visitor programs have a need for volunteers. We have adapted the services to reflect the safety precautions recommended by the CDC and Vermont’s Health Department.  There are many ways to help our older Vermonters. Join our volunteer corps and we will give you training, support, and gratitude.

One of the greatest tools we can all have right now is compassion. Listening to a segment including a recorded interview with Eleanor Roosevelt made me wish she were here with us today. I am convinced she would be wearing her mask. I am inspired to exhibit her generosity of spirit, which drove her to work on behalf of all Americans. Whether addressing mental health issues, public service responsibility, access to voting, or ending poverty, she was motivated by an innate combination of kindness, strength, and determination. I am so grateful to have been reminded of someone who exhibited the best of our human spirit. As she once said, the most important word and attitude we have is “hope.”

I hope you will encourage your friends, neighbors, and relatives to call our Help Line and check our website at for information about Medicare Open Enrollment, 3Squares, and other nutrition programs, Home Meds, Medicaid, fuel assistance, self-neglect, dementia/Alzheimer’s resources, PEARLS interactive mild depression counseling, caregiver tools and respite grants, and many other benefits specifically tailored for our aging population by the National Council on Aging. Our website also showcases our BCTV series: “Keeping up with Senior Solutions.”  Watch for upcoming programs on a variety of topics.

Please enjoy planning and preparing for the upcoming holidays. Be safe and sensible. We salute our veterans, volunteers, and all community groups.

  Written by Joan Erenhouse, Senior Solutions

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