RSVP – Retired and Senior Volunteer Program

About RSVP

Are you over the age of 55 and looking for an opportunity to give back to your community? RSVP helps individuals stay involved and active in their community, whether they are preparing for retirement or have been retired for many years.

RSVP is a unique program that supports wellness and positive aging. It allows people of various backgrounds, skills, and expertise tackle the issues that impact their community, such as transportation issues, poverty, and loneliness. Volunteers can choose where they would like to serve, as well as how often they want to serve. Training is provided initially and ongoing as needed. You can volunteer in an area that utilizes skills you have honed throughout your life, or you can try something completely new.

Volunteers bring a diversity of interests and experiences, combined with a dedication to improving lives through service. As a volunteer, you will enjoy the satisfaction of making a difference in someone’s life, building stronger and safer communities, getting back more than you give, and making friends along the way.

Testimonials

Volunteering at HCHC

The Henry County Heritage Trust Museum is a perfect opportunity for anyone interested in history. We have a rich supply of photos and other Henry County artifacts that the museum volunteers are busily sorting, identifying, and getting ready for display. Join them and be a part of preserving and celebrating Henry County history.

Gift Shop

This station helps to staff the gift shop at the local hospital. Hours vary based on your availability. People who go to the gift shop may be looking for the right gift for a loved one, or they may be filling some time while that loved one receives treatment. Either way, you have the opportunity to brighten their day.

Information Desk

This volunteer works at the Information Desk at the front of the hospital. Hours vary based on your availability. As the volunteer, you can be a source of help for people who are there to visit a loved one, or who are seeking treatment themselves. You may be called upon to escort someone to the appropriate department.

Patient/Family Ambassador

This is a high impact opportunity serving patients and their families in various departments at Henry County Health Center. Volunteers in this area assist the medical staff in proving a quality experience. Volunteers do this through taking care of the non-medical needs of the patients and their families, such as ensuring their questions get answered, making them feel comfortable, and lending an ear to listen and a shoulder for support. Volunteers may also be called upon to take blood samples to the HCHC lab.

SHIIP

Volunteers with the SHIIP program assist individuals in navigating the Medicare system, guiding them towards the option that is best for their needs. This opportunity requires the most training, but also comes with the ability to save people thousands of dollars in medical expenses every year.

More Ways to Help

Assisting the Chamber

Assisting the Chamber and the Southeast Iowa Symphony with mailings.

Meals to the Homebound

Home-Delivered Meals by Milestones Area Agency on Aging: This station works with Milestones AAA to deliver hot meals to elderly homebound individuals. It is one day a week, about an hour each time. As the volunteer, you pick up the food and deliver one meal to each house on your route. Your route could be in Mount Pleasant, Salem, or Winfield, depending on your need. This service is a lifeline to the participants. They report that their daily visit from the volunteer is often the only human contact they have each day, in addition to providing them with a daily meal. It is both physical and emotional nourishment; therefore, the best volunteers in this station are ones who have a caring heart for the loneliness the clients often experience.

Medical Transportation

This station provides transportation to elderly and disabled individuals so they can attend to their medical needs. This may mean doctor’s appointments, trips to the hospital to see a specialist, trips to the pharmacy to pick up prescriptions, etc. Frequency of rides depends on volunteer preference. The volunteer also has full say over geographical preferences. Some people choose to stay local, some people are happy to go to Burlington but not Iowa City, some people are fine with Iowa City but not with the University Hospital. Whatever you as the volunteer are comfortable with is fine.

This can be a really fun volunteer opportunity as the volunteers and the clients often form bonds of friendship with each other. Outside of the social benefits, the access to medical care is essential for the recipients of this service. The relief for the clients is evident in their voices when I tell them I have a driver for their appointment. I have had more than a few people thank me profusely for this service and tell me how grateful they are. One woman told me she would not be alive today if it were not for the medical transportation program.

Midwest Old Thresher’s

Assembling candy boxes for Midwest Old Thresher’s.

Paired Reader at Mount Pleasant Elementary Schools

This station works with local elementary schools to give students an opportunity to practice their reading skills in a one-on-one setting. Most volunteers commit to an hour each week. Times and days are set by the teacher, based on need. The paired reader often works with several students in that hour. Grade level is generally assigned based on volunteer request. This position offers an opportunity to make a very real impact in the life of a child, or several children. For some of the students, the chance to get individual attention and praise from a caring adult is a rare and precious thing. Both the individual attention and the improved reading ability help foster an increased self-esteem and self-worth. The best volunteers for this position love children, value literacy, and can be kind and patient with struggling readers.