Research has shown volunteers 55 and older who serve as senior companions often find they also reap significant financial and health benefits from the experience.
Idaho’s AmeriCorps Seniors Companion volunteers visit homes, help the person leave the house to go shopping, to doctor appointments and even the senior center for bingo. Volunteers also help with bills, laundry and engage in conversation over a cup of coffee.
According to a study on AmeriCorps senior programs,* benefits for individuals getting assistance include:
- Spending time with others.
- Living in their home.
- Cost of living stays down. The median monthly cost of an assisted living facility is $4,051 compared to the mean monthly housing expenditure of $1,505. Annual cost savings reach $30,552 per person.
- Improved health and decreased hospital visits. The federal government saved nearly $59 million each year on Medicare and Medicaid health care expenditures.
For Immediate Release: Dec. 14, 2020
Media Contact: Renee Bade, firstname.lastname@example.org
Serve Idaho, the Governor’s Commission on Service and Volunteerism, is seeking applicants to serve a three-year term.
The commission is seeking representatives from the following areas:
- Volunteer sector.
- A national service program.
- County or city government.
- Local labor organization.
- Expertise in the educational, training and development needs of youth, particularly disadvantaged youth.
Students entering the job market have a 27 percent higher chance of being hired if they have volunteer experience. Volunteering teaches valuable job skills, improves social networks, provides real world experience and demonstrates an individual’s ability to work in teams. Below are a few examples of Idahoans who turned volunteering into a career.
Elizabeth Corsentino was a Boise State University student who volunteered at Radio Boise because of her love for music. Through networking at her position, she met the Treefort festival director who hired her to be part of the original founding group for the annual music festival.
“Volunteering is the best way to develop skills and network in the field you’re passionate about,” Corsentino said.
Corsentino now organizes and manages the volunteers for Treefort and is the volunteer coordinator for Radio Boise.
So you want to volunteer this holiday season but might not know where to start? Here are a few volunteer opportunities in Idaho this holiday season.
Winter Garden aGlow, Boise
Talk about having a great view while you’re volunteering. Winter Garden aGlow takes place at the Idaho Botanical Garden in Boise from Nov. 26 to New Year’s Day. The Winter Garden aGlow is a walk through a Christmas light and decoration show boasting more than 300,000 displayed lights. Volunteer shifts are 4.5 hours, and there is a variety of available positions varying from taking tickets, monitoring paths, serving complimentary cocoa and cider, handing out candy canes and many more opportunities. A full list can be found at http://idahobotanicalgarden.org/winter-garden-aglow/. Contact: Karen Christeson at (208) 275-8605, email@example.com
Secret Santa Volunteers, Pocatello
Want to help out with Secret Santa but your budget might be a little too tight to participate? The Salvation Army in Pocatello is looking for volunteers at its Angel Tree site in the Pine Ridge Mall until Dec. 24. Volunteers will collect information from people wishing to participate in the program as well as collect and document the gifts brought in. Volunteer positions also are available to help with sorting, packing and distributing donated gifts. Contact Information: Julie Christiansen, (208) 232-5318, Julie.firstname.lastname@example.org
Volunteers have higher odds of finding employment in today’s job market. A recent study by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) found that volunteers have a 27 percent higher likelihood of finding a job out of being out of work than non-volunteers.