Newly retired seniors may be concerned about how exactly they’re going to fill their days now that they no longer have a job to head to on a daily basis. One rewarding way you can spend your time is by becoming a senior volunteer, where you can use the skills you’ve acquired over the span of your career, plus make a difference in your community and other’s lives. Volunteering also provides the opportunity to learn something new altogether; something you’ve always wanted to do but previously never had the time to learn.
Seniors who are proficient in various services and industries have useful skills companies and organizations are looking for. Not only can your skills help organizations save money on training programs, but senior volunteer opportunities provide a chance for reciprocal learning with today’s younger generation. Young people can learn from your lifelong lessons, and in return, you can learn more about things you might not be as comfortable with, like new technology.
Studies have shown that senior volunteers are more satisfied than their working-for-pay counterparts. This is due to the fact that seniors have the option of choosing the work they’d like to do. Sharing your skills is very important, but you can also become a volunteer in an occupation you find meaningful and exciting. The choice is yours whether you wish to help others, your community or provide assistance to organizations.
Plus, senior volunteers are often more physically, mentally and emotionally healthy. Volunteering helps you stay mobile and productive, which can slow the aging process and add years to your life! Further studies have shown that senior volunteers maintain better brain function, increasing their cognitive abilities overall. Also, staying involved in your community and building relationships with others helps you avoid the social isolation that can lead to loneliness and depression in many seniors.
The first step in becoming a senior volunteer is to decide what type of work you’d find most rewarding. Think about the skills you’ve developed throughout your career or the things you enjoy doing most. For example, if you were an accountant who loves numbers, look into volunteering your services during tax season. Maybe you love animals- local shelters are always in need of volunteers to help feed the cats or take dogs out on walks. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to help others in need; volunteer at an area hospital or help tutor children. The possibilities are endless!
Certain organizations are available to help match your skills to volunteer opportunities in your community. Volunteer Match, for example, is a website that helps seniors find volunteer work. You’ll enter your zip code and get a list of all kinds of opportunities in your area. The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) is another organization that helps seniors find the perfect volunteer job, whether it’s using skills you already have or if you’re looking to learn something new.
At Lourdes-Noreen McKeen in beautiful West Palm Beach, Florida, residents are encouraged to stay as active as possible through a variety of senior activities. Whether you choose to become a senior volunteer or stay active by joining in the many social events and activities we have planned, you’ll never run out of things to do at Lourdes-Noreen McKeen!
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