Elaine Downing is RSVP’s March Volunteer of the Month. Elaine volunteers with the America Reads program in Crestview Elementary School. She started in the fall and is devoted to the kids she sees each week.
“There are two fourth grade boys I see nearly every week,” Elaine tells; “they look forward to seeing me, too. It’s a lot of fun.”
She also tells a story of having a moment of doubt as to whether she was making any difference for the kids and quickly finding the answer. “I came in the week after Christmas and all of the kids had made me Christmas cards. They all had things like “You’re the best, Mrs. Downing.” And “you’re my favorite, it was fantastic.”
Elaine looked to volunteering after retiring from social work. She worked in Cumberland County for the Office of Aging for many years. Before that she had been a stay at home mom and a substitute teacher. She’s lived in Central Pennsylvania for 35 years, but is originally from New Jersey.
The desire to touch children’s lives is strong with Elaine’s family; her two sons and daughter-in-law are also teachers. When not volunteering, Elaine enjoys time with her young grandson and planning for her upcoming trip to Japan, where one son teaches English.
“It will be my first time; I’m really looking forward to it. We’ll get to visit an exchange student I had many years ago and have kept in touch with.”
For more information about volunteering with RSVP in Cumberland County contact Michelle Jones at 717-541-9521 or by email at PerryCumb@rsvpCapReg.org
RSVP of the Capital Region’s volunteer of the month for February is D. Monine Seitz. Monine volunteers at Healthy World Café in the City of York. She prepares and serves food for customers who visit the café for lunch. She was born and raised in York County. Monine is married, has two daughters and five grandchildren. She retired from York Bank & Trust Operations Department. Monine likes to bowl and also volunteers at the Strand Capital Performing Arts Center, and The Pullo Center.
For more information about volunteering with RSVP of the Capital Region, contact Scott Hunsinger, York County Development Coordinator at 443 619-3842 or by e-mail at YorkAdamsFranklin@rsvpcapreg.org
Each week, four fresh faces from UCP join the RSVP office staff to sort donations, prepare a bulk mailing, label donated books or create cards for area veterans. Several volunteers are shown above, with staff. Their presence always cheers the office, and of course their help is invaluable. That’s why the UCP volunteers are some of our favorites and our pick for Volunteer of the Month.
Consumers of the UCP program in Colonial Park are big on volunteering. In fact RSVP is just one of their regular projects. Others include the packing of boxes with the food bank, sorting at the recycling center, office help at WITF, working with Meals on Wheels in Colonial Park, and various duties at Swatara Church of God. They also regularly help dust cars at the Antique Auto Club of America Museum and help with mailings at a local domestic violence charity.
Volunteer efforts are one part of the program for adults with disabilities, where clients choose their activities. Options ranging from recreational outings, educational trips or volunteering in the community. The group is out in the community at least once a week, and is always looking for more good works to do.
For further information about RSVP volunteer opportunities in the Capital Region, please contact Michelle Jones, Cumberland County Development Coordinator. Her phone is 717-541-9521, and her e-mail is PerryCumb@rsvpCapReg.org
“The Embracing Aging grant will allow us to create one common point of entry for volunteers,” explained Glenn Miller, vice president of External Relations at SpiriTrust Lutheran. “We are pleased that YCCF sees the value in maximizing impact through strategic collaborations. The overall goal is improved service delivery and increased efficiency.”
“This grant will advance volunteer recruitment, offer high quality education to senior volunteers and reduce isolation among older adults,” said Cathy Bollinger, managing director of Embracing Aging. “We are delighted the entities came together and are working collaboratively to engage senior volunteers.”
Pictured above, left-to-right: Layla Boyce (YCF grants and scholarship program administrator), Cathy Bollinger (YCCF managing director of Embracing Aging, Joan Krechmer (Jewish Family Services of York executive director and geriatric care manager), Angela Dohrman (SpiriTrust Lutheran vice president of senior living), Scott Brubaker (RSVP of the Capital Region program director), Glenn Miller (SpiriTrust Lutheran vice president of External Relations), Scott Hunsinger (RSVP development coordinator), and Carol Miller (Jewish Family Services program and development coordinator).
RSVP of the Capital Region and the Senior Companion Program of York County are collecting hygiene and food items to benefit the York County Food Bank, as part of our Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service project.
Donations are being collected January 8th – February 8th, 2016
Hygiene and non-perishable food items:
Canned vegetables & fruits
Canned and boxed meals (i.e. soup, chili, stew, macaroni and cheese, hamburger helper)
Canned or dried beans, and peas
Pasta, rice, low sugar cereals
Instant mixes like potatoes, gravies, and sauces that add a little something special to a holiday meal
Canned meats (i.e. tuna, chicken, salmon) that do not require refrigeration before opening
RSVP of the Capital Region-York County is seeking volunteers for an after school program. Become a volunteer and make a difference with children attending this new Mason-Dixon community service program in Delta, PA.
Volunteer benefits include: transportation reimbursement, free supplemental liability insurance, recognition and appreciation events, assistance with clearances, Comcast Newsmakers appearance, volunteer of the month in York County 50+ monthly newspaper, and improved personal happiness.
RSVP of the Capital Region has been serving the needs of eight counties by recruiting and placing volunteers who make a difference in their communities.
Please contact Scott Hunsinger at 443 619-3842 or email at YorkAdamsFranklin@rsvpCapReg.org.
Our RSVP volunteers produce a variety of lap robes and afghans that are donated to veterans at VA Centers and shelters and other senior residences. Yarn may be dropped off at the RSVP offices, located at 50 Utley Drive in Camp Hill, between 9:00am and 4:30pm weekdays. Please call before delivering. A flat bed rolling cart is available for transferring from your vehicle. We can arrange to pick up large quantities. In addition to yarn (no rug yarn please), we also need knitting needles, crochet hooks and other knitting supplies.
RSVP also partners with schools, food banks and shelters by collecting and distributing hats, mittens, gloves, socks, scarves and personal care items. If you or your organization has other handmade needle-arts items that you would like to donate for our volunteer recognition and fund raising events, we would appreciate your collaboration. Cash donations are also welcomed.
If you know of veterans in residence that are in need of any of the items mentioned above, please contact us. RSVP of the Capital Region isa 501[c]3 non-profit community benefit organization that has been assisting volunteers throughout the Susquehanna Valley for more than forty years.
To donate or inquire, call RSVP at 800-870-2616 or email rsvp@rsvpCapReg.org.
RSVP of the Capital Region is collaborating with Pennsylvania Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP), and the Center for Advocacy for the Rights and Interests of the elderly (CARIE), to educate older consumers on how to recognize health care fraud: how to protect themselves from fraud; and how to report fraud.
Thanks to Scott Brubaker, RSVP’s Project Director, we are helping assemble fraud awareness teams of volunteers in Dauphin, Lebanon, Lancaster and York Counties. Initial and on-going training will be provided; there is a six-month volunteer commitment requested.
Presentations will be made to seniors at senior centers, retirement communities, expos and a wide variety of civic and community organizations.
This is a great way to become familiar with health care fraud activities, and to share that knowledge throughout your community.
RSVP of the Capital Region appreciates the opportunity to collaborate with other key community service organizations, and encourages you to consider volunteering for this very important project.