Friendly Visitors

Do you enjoy talking or visiting with people? The Friendly Visitor program is focused on visiting seniors in our community who live alone and have very little to no support or socialization. Volunteers visit a minimum of two times a month; days and times are left up to the volunteer and senior. The visits can include anything such as talking, drinking coffee, or playing games. The opportunities are endless.

All perspective volunteers must, be 18 years of age or older, complete an introductory orientation, volunteer application and fingerprint background check. Orientations are scheduled at the convenience of the volunteer. Volunteers are required to attend quarterly meetings. The agency covers the cost of background check. Mileage reimbursement is available.

Senior Relief Buddy

Senior Relief Buddy is a program focused directly to assist caregivers of frail elders. The Relief Buddy program will allow the caregivers a break from their responsibilities while the seniors interact with trained and certified volunteers. Volunteers must pass a fingerprint background check; attend visitor orientation and a 4-hour class to help them understand the unique situations for seniors who depend upon their family or friends for various needs. It is the expectation that the volunteers will be contacted to assist occasionally and for approximately 3-4 hours each time. Mileage reimbursement will be available.

The training class will involve insights into dealing with a senior who may have Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of memory impairment; potential emotional or mental health issues; or physical limitations. Also included will be information about confidentiality, avoiding over-involvement, and expectations for the time a volunteer will be spending with a senior. Several of the trainers will share best practices, such as suggestions for activities, regarding interacting with seniors with various limitations.

*Not currently taking applications*

Peer 2 Peer Counselor

Volunteer Senior Peer Counselors are trained to provide counseling and support to those experiencing emotional distress due to health problems, grief, loss of a loved one, depression, anxiety or other difficulty.

All counselors must be 55 or older and complete 30 hours of training. New Counselor training classes are hosted twice a year. Training sessions included the ABC’s of counseling; counseling interventions; understanding death, grief and loss; depression and loneliness; aging and physical, emotional and spiritual health. Once training is completed Counselors are required to attend supervision meetings the 1st and 3rd Thursday of the month and visit clients weekly for 8 weeks for a minimum of 1 hour. Volunteer Counselors are supervised by a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) Mileage reimbursement is available.

HICAP Counselor

Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP) provides counseling to Medicare beneficiaries of all ages. Counselors help beneficiaries understand Medicare options, compare private to supplemental plans, review Medicare Advantage plans, research Part D plans, assist with appeals or challenge claims, clarify the rights of health care to the consumer. Counselors are trained to provide unbiased information.

Counselors are required to complete training with the HICAP manager. Once training is complete, Counselors are required to complete co-counseling sessions before becoming a certified counselor and registered by the California Department of Aging. Background check is required. Counselors are required to attend monthly meetings. Mileage reimbursement is available. Counselors do not sell any typed of insurance or health care coverage, nor will they recommend any specific plan or policy.

To sign up for one of the Aging & Veterans Services Volunteer Programs please contact Volunteer Coordinator Julia Washington @ 209-525-4613 or washingtonj@stancounty.com

For information about other volunteer opportunities within Stanislaus County go to: http://www.stancounty.com/volunteer/