Senior Advocacy and Volunteering

VolunteeringWhile retirement brings the freedom to travel or pursue hobbies, you may long for the structure or socializing that a job provides. Volunteering can provide a job-like structure without the stress of working. And best of all, you know that your service is appreciated and needed.

Whether you want to tutor children, serve as an advocate for other seniors in your state or work at a local animal shelter, there are many organizations in your community that could use your skills, experience and time. Here are a few organizations where you could consider donating your time.

Silver Haired Legislature

If you enjoy the legislative process or want a voice in the legislation that affects seniors in your state, consider joining the Silver Haired Legislature (SHL). This organization started in 1973 in the State of Missouri and has since been adopted in many states.

The SHL is formed of seniors from around your state who meet and propose legislation that is presented to the state legislature during its legislation session. Below is a listing of the states whose Silver Haired Legislatures have websites. If your state is not listed below, contact a local Area Agency on Aging to find out how to reach the SHL in your state.

Senior Corps

Consider joining the 337,000 seniors 55+ around the United States who donate their time through Senior Corps. The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), the Foster Grandparent Program (FGP) and the Senior Companion Program (SCP) are three programs that match seniors with local volunteer opportunities. Senior Corps is administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency that strives to create change through service and volunteering. Visit Get Involved to learn of opportunities in your community.

Other Organizations

Hospitals, libraries and national parks are other agencies that could use your talents and time. To find organizations that offer volunteer opportunities that match your interests, visit VolunteerMatch.org or United Way.