Help preserve Bordner Cabin in Swatara (PA) State Park on Wednesday, October 19

bordnercabinHow would you like to spend a day in the woods, helping to preserve historic Bordner Cabin in Swatara State Park in northern Lebanon County?

From 9am to 4pm you can help other volunteers stain this deep woods structure.

For directions and information please contact:

  • Jo Ellen Litz, Lebanon County Commissioner, 717-228-4427,
  • Margie Groy, RSVP Lebanon County Coordinator, 717- 454-8647,

RSVP is looking for a 21st CCLC Program Coordinator.

Love working with children?

Make a difference by coordinating Elementary After School and Summer Programs at the Newport School District! 

REQUIREMENTS: Understand needs of students, parents, teachers and the community. Excellent oral and written skills. Familiar with grants, proposal writing and budgets. Experience with Word, Excel, databases and the Internet.

RESPONSIBILITIES: Hire and manage personnel and volunteers, including schedules, timesheets/volunteer hours reports, duties, staff meetings and conflicts. Recruit and enroll students. Communicate with students, staff and volunteers.

Attend RSVP staff meetings, conferences, school board and community meetings. Some travel.

Full-time, 37.5 flexible hours per week (based on the after school and summer programs) 

$26,325 per annum

BENEFITS: vacation and personal days, retirement contribution, health insurance

Send resume, references and writing sample to:     Deadline October 17





Internet Essentials: Another twist on low-cost broadband service for low-income Americans

Comcast, the cable TV giant, is the biggest name in the low-cost internet business with a program called Internet Essentials. If you live in areas of the country served by Comcast and you qualify, you can now get Internet Essentials for just $9.95 per month instead of the $40–60 (after teaser promotions) the company charges for its lowest cost basic plan. As of August 2014, over 1.4 million kids from 350,000 families now are online thanks to the wonderful program.

Consider this important statistic: Only 45% of families earning under $30,000 currently have broadband service in their homes. This puts those parents and their children at a huge disadvantage when it comes to finding and applying for jobs, communicating with doctors, completing homework and other everyday tasks that more affluent families take for granted.

Internet Essentials costs just $9.95 a month and delivers a blazing fast 10 Mbps download speed. Qualifying families will even be able to purchase a computer for only $149.99. There are no activation fees and no additional equipment fees, and your internet now comes with a wireless router.

You also get the world famous Norton Security Suite which gives you professional online security. It’s a $160 value, but you get it absolutely free.

Great news for America’s senior citizens: Internet Essentials conducting pilot program for seniors

And finally, Internet Essentials gives you free parental control features to help protect your kids whether they’re doing their schoolwork or just playing on the internet.

How to qualify for Internet Essentials

To qualify for Internet Essentials and get a low-cost computer and high-speed internet access for just $9.95 per month, a family must have at least one child eligible to receive a reduced or free school lunch through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) (recently broadened to include students in private schools, parochial schools and homeschooled students). Schools designated at “Provision 2” automatically qualify all students.

There are two restrictions that you must be aware of:

  1. You cannot have been a Comcast internet subscriber in the last 90 days. If you want to get Internet Essentials, you are going to need to cancel (if you contract allows) your service and call Internet Essentials to sign up after three months.
  2. You cannot have a Comcast bills that is over 12 months past due. However, if you have an overdue bill from just within the last 12 months, Comcast has recently changed the rules and will accept you as an Internet Essentials customer, provided you agree to the payment plan they work up to pay off the late bills.
  3. You cannot have any unreturned equipment.

Of course, you have to be in an area served by Comcast, but you’ve got a good chance, since Internet Essentials is available in more than 4,000 school districts in 39 states plus the District of Columbia.

READ ALSO: Internet Basics: inexpensive internet for low-income Americans

The states we show as having Comcast Cable available are: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia (DC). If you don’t see your state on the list, you should still check with Comcast in case they’ve added service in a state since we wrote this.

Once enrolled, a customer will be able to continue receiving Internet Essentials service at the same low price as long as at least one child in their household continues to qualify for a reduced or free lunch under the National School Lunch Program.

Internet Essentials originated when Comcast acquired NBC. In order to win FCC approval, Comcast agreed to “increase broadband deployment in low income households” for three years. In 2014 they said they would like to run the program “indefinitely.”

Cities and Towns with Internet Essentials

This is not an exhaustive list but shows most of the cities and towns where Comcast Internet Essentials is available: Pennsylvania: Altoona, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Johnstown, Lancaster, Lebanon, Levittown, Mechanicsburg, Norristown, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Pottstown, Reading, Scranton, State College, West Chester, Wilkes Barre, York.

Recent Articles on Internet Essentials

Finally: HUD approves internet access program for low-income seniors– Seniors in all of Comcast’s markets can now apply for the company’s Internet Essentials program to obtain internet access for $9.95 per month. It’s also offering technical training, digital literacy programs, and devices for senior citizens in those communities.

Huge Internet Essentials expansion: $10 per month plan now available to HUD families with no children – If there’s one complaint we hear most often here at, it is that none of the low-income Internet plans are available to families without children. Well, Comcast and its Internet Essentials program has taken a big step toward solving that problem.

More good news for America’s poor: Comcast bringing cheap internet to public housing residents – Comcast just announced that it has begun rolling out its low-income, high-speed Internet Essentials plan to residents of public housing.

Wisdom meets potential in senior tutoring program

alandubs-jaylenlaborielTutor Alan Dubs, fist pumps with first grader Jaylen Laboriel, 6, after going over his alphabet letters Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016, at Arthur W. Ferguson School, in York City.

Alan Dubs is retired, but far from idle — he dedicates approximately 35 hours each week to Ferguson K-8 school. And one local organization is looking for at least a few more generous seniors to do the same.

Dubs works with students in the K-8 school as a tutor through the RSVP of the Capital Region, a volunteer-based organization in the area for people 55 years old and up. The tutoring program began about three years ago, according to Scott Hunsinger, the organization’s development coordinator in York, Adams and Franklin counties.

Each year since the program’s inception, Dubs has won the award for tallying the most volunteer hours.

At 65, Dubs knew he wanted to give back to the community. He decided to connect with RSVP and work with students at Ferguson K-8, where his own daughter attended school. He works with kids of all ages — he even eats lunch with them on occasion.

“It’s so rewarding. It gives you a sense of purpose,” Dubs said. “When I go into school, I tell a lot of them that I’m their temporary in-house parent or grandparent, and I’m going to treat them just like they’re my child.”

The volunteers: Volunteer tutors are able to spend time in the school of their choice so long as RSVP of the Capital Region has a relationship with that school. The seniors can choose to dedicate the number of hours that work with their schedules, as well.

Patti Hullman, a former kindergarten teacher and resident of Springfield Township, decided to volunteer in Jackson K-8 because she missed teaching after retiring.

She spends about two hours each week with a kindergarten class there, helping the children master the skills to help them succeed in the future. Hullman said volunteering in a kindergarten class is important because many of the students might not know English and didn’t always attend a pre-K program. Therefore, the children may be just learning basic skills in English before they can move on to anything else

“I think especially with the younger children, the more we can do to help them to acquire that good foundation that they need to carry them through school, the better they’re going to be,” Hullman said. “When I taught I was fortunate because I had a lot of parent volunteers, but that just isn’t the case anymore with a lot of the districts, not just the city district.”

Both Hullman and Dubs agreed that there’s a dire need in York County for more tutors and volunteers in the school districts in general. With many families either having single-parent households or homes in which both parents work, there aren’t as many people who can take the time to volunteer during the school days with the kids. And both said volunteering with the younger kids is incredibly fulfilling.

“We feel we get as much out of the program as the children that we’re working with,” Hullman said. “It makes you feel good and it’s helping us and as much as it seems to be helping them.” Dubs said the kids just love working with him and the other volunteers, and they are almost like family to him.

The program: The tutors in the program work primarily on reading and math, Hunsinger said. There are currently 16 tutors who work in York County and serve three school districts: York City, Hanover and South Eastern. In York City, tutors volunteer in Jackson, Devers, Ferguson and McKinley K-8 schools. Hunsinger said that they are working on getting a tutor for Goode K-8 in the near future as well.

Hunsinger wants to continue to expand the tutor program to even more school districts in the county, but to do so RSVP of the Capital Region needs more volunteers. Volunteers aren’t paid but are reimbursed for transportation, given free supplemental liability insurance, given assistance with clearances needed to work with students in the district and get a lot of satisfaction from helping the kids, Hunsinger said.

“Students really look up to the tutors, they really like having them come in,” Hunsinger said. “It’s not just tutoring; the tutors show them love, and they get attention from the tutors on a one-on-one basis.”

Hunsinger said none of the 16 volunteers are there for the perks but because they really love the community and want to better it. Many volunteers that tutor volunteer through RSVP in other aspects  as well, such as for the food bank or in soup kitchens.

To get involved as a volunteer for the RSVP of the Capital Region, Scott Hunsinger encourages anyone to email him at or call him at (443) 619-3842.

This article is reproduced with permission of The York Dispatch, Alyssa Jackson (writer), and Amanda J. Cain (photographer).

RSVP participates in Rep. Patty Kim’s 4th Annual Senior Health Fair


State Rep. Patty Kim, D-Dauphin, hosted her fourth annual senior health fair Friday, Sept. 9 at the Goodwin Memorial Baptist Church Family Life Center, 2430 N. 3rd St., Harrisburg.

This year’s fair focused on the health and welfare of senior citizens and included:

  • Free health screenings
  • Information on programs to benefit seniors
  • Free dental consultations

A diverse group of vendors offered information on transportation, fitness, insurance, housing disability and health care services. In addition, there were free giveaways and light refreshments.

RSVP was represented by Rick Sayles (Development Coordinator for Dauphin County).  Rick provided information on volunteer opportunities, and assisted Representative Kim with the distribution of door prizes.

For further information about Dauphin County volunteer opportunities, please contact Rick at 800-870-2616, 717-541-9521, or eMail him at