As seniors reach retirement, they may feel that they will be quite content sleeping late, joining a few clubs and traveling – and some really will be. But for many seniors, one of the things they miss most from their former working days is that certain feeling of accomplishment and the joy that comes from a purposeful existence. When those feelings can no longer be filled by ordinary work tasks some seniors feel withdrawal symptoms and begin to look for substitute projects that will fill their needs. If you have begun to explore the wonderful world of volunteering to help you to feel more productive, you may be interested in these senior tips for great volunteering sites.
1. Hospitals and Medical Facilities One senior tip for great volunteering sites is to consider the local hospitals or medical facilities located near you. The sheer volume of paper work and patient traffic in health related buildings gives clear indication of the need that most modern medical facilities have for volunteer assistants.
Your resume doesn’t have to be overpowering. Running your own household for forty years and raising a family may be all the qualification you need. But being the former head of a manufacturing firm won’t disqualify you either. Medical facilities are interested in your reliability, enthusiasm and your ability to follow simple directions. Medical facilities need volunteers who come to help wearing a smile and loaded with dedication to the people they serve directly or indirectly.
The kinds of tasks that volunteers are given in medical facilities are truly diverse and often delightfully challenging. Many of the volunteer positions offer some personal contact with the clientele. You may be asked to man the information desk, take flowers to patient rooms, deliver inter office memos or folders, staff the snack bar or gift shop or even escort out patients to various departments in the building.
In some cases volunteers may help with the less personal aspects of the medical world by assisting with filing or mailings. Each medical facility is different in its needs and its priorities but most are alike in their sincere need for and respect of volunteers. If you are looking for a volunteer task that can leave you feeling like you have done something worthwhile a good senior tip for great volunteering sites is to try your local medical facility.
2. The Public Library A second good senior tip for great volunteering sites is the public library in your community. There are a surprising number of chores and activities at the library that may well depend on the availability of volunteer help. Volunteers can be trained to restack books in open stacks, give directions to select areas in the library, or assist patrons with book searches in the stacks or on line.
Some volunteers may enjoy keeping the periodical section updated and cataloged properly. Others may get involved in repairing damaged books or assisting with library mailings. If you have a good phone voice and like personal contact perhaps you can be that cheerful voice on the other end of the phone reminding card holders that a book they ordered is ready for pick up. If working with young children is your strong suit , then you may find all kinds of fun things to do in the children’s section of the library.
There is so much that goes on at most public libraries that their need for volunteers may well be year round. If you like books and enjoy sharing the adventure that books hold, then for you, a good senior tip for great volunteering sites is certainly the public library.
3. Mentoring For those who enjoy working one on one with children , good senior tips for great volunteering sites would have to include mentoring sites. Throughout the country, in the inner city , suburbs, even rural areas, there are children who suffer from the lack of positive adult presence or involvement in their lives. These children from grammar school through high school might benefit from weekly mentoring from a senior citizen like you.
There are numerous organizations that help to formalize and support local mentoring programs. A good place to begin may be by talking with a guidance department representative in your local school system. Many schools sponsor mentoring programs that provide safe meeting space and suggested activities for would be volunteers. You may be asked to assist students with homework or what they need may simply be a caring adult who is willing to listen and has a solid segment of time available just to be a mentor.
Your school may also direct you to other local organizations like “Boys and Girls Clubs of America”, ” Big Brother Big Sister” , the YMCA, or local church groups. All of these groups have experience in mentoring and can help to get you off on the right foot. The children you help will make it clear that a senior tip for great volunteering sites is any site where mentoring is going on.
4. National Audubon, State and National Parks Not every retired senior wants to volunteer to stay indoors for hours at a time. Many seniors are physically fit and enjoy spending long parts of their day outside . For those folks a good senior tip for great volunteering sites is to contact your nearest National Audubon office or State or National Park.
All of these locations have plenty of indoor volunteer opportunities, but they also are likely to be able to find something very productive for senior volunteers to do that will take them outdoors. Light site management tasks may suit you or perhaps you would enjoy guiding groups of scouts or school children through some of the sites most exciting spots. Seniors also find that many parks have special outdoor events throughout the year that require lots of hours of volunteer help and are very happy to receive assistance from reliable senior citizens.
A senior tip for great volunteer sites is to never overlook whatever nature sanctuaries or wildlife preserves you may find nearby. They are always searching for ways to improve their offerings and be more welcoming to guests. Seniors can find lots of ways to be involved.
Being a senior citizen who has retired can mean starting a whole new phase of your life filled with exciting and useful things to do, especially if you consider these senior tips for great volunteering sites.