RSVP Program Nonprofit Highlight - Villages Clark County
Villages Clark County supports local seniors by providing assistance that allows them to stay in their homes longer, and as safety and inexpensively as possible. To make this happen volunteers work hard behind the scenes to help this process along. You too can be part of this sweeping national grassroots movement right here in Clark County by assisting the Operations Team! Volunteers are need to respond to office phone calls and emails, process member request for services utilizing a specialized computer system, and assist with recording service requests after volunteers complete activities. See what a difference volunteering at Villages Clark County has made in Volunteer John’s life!
John learned about the value of community service very early in his life as a Boy Scout, while achieving his Eagle Scout award. The desire to contribute to his community and to the nation, and a keen sense of competition in sports and academics led him to an appointment to the Air Force Academy and a 30-year career in the Air Force (AF). His personal faith and his experience in AF leadership positions taught him that the most effective leader is first a servant of those he leads.
John said, “When I moved to Vancouver, I wanted to volunteer in a program that would make a lasting difference in my community. The aging-at-home Village concept just seemed right to me…neighbors helping neighbors, as it should be!” So, from the very beginning efforts of Villages Clark County (VCC) in 2016, John saw the need to let others know about the program. He has helped lead the Marketing and Outreach efforts of VCC for the past three years.
Before his own mother was displaced from her apartment due to health reasons, John saw that she and others in their 80’s and 90’s were actively living life, and enjoying it. They would get some help from family, friends, or neighbors for hanging plants, help with shopping, or other tasks, but they lived independent, happy lives. This is what John and others in VCC are actively promoting, providing friends and neighbors to help people stay independent. So, he devotes a lot of time now in speaking at churches, civic organizations, public talks in libraries, and other venues. “When I tell our story, the Villages story, I relate examples of helping seniors declutter from downsizing, giving rides to go shopping or to the doctor, trimming some hedges, or just visiting. The simple kindness of listening is often the best gift of all.”
John’s focus on telling the story has helped enlist support for developing the VCC website, operating a Face Book page, publishing a monthly newsletter, advertising and writing an editorial in local media, reaching out to all Vancouver and Clark County Neighborhood Associations, and even speaking on a local radio interview. One primary goal of his is to excite and involve more volunteers and members in helping to tell the story…their story, of why the Village is important to them. “I just want Villages Clark County to be the self-supporting, self-staining, and even culture-changing program that it has been shown to be in other Villages across the country.”
You too can volunteer at this great organization by calling RSVP at 360-735-3683 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.