Becoming a Senior Companion on a Stipend

Updated on March 14, 2018
Perspycacious profile image

Writer, editor, publisher Demas W. Jasper's articles on HubPages have had over 62,000 Views and 9,100 Comments 85 of his Hubs are featured.

One More Volunteer

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Giving Care For A Care Giver

The old question was "Who gives care to the care giver's daughter, when the care giver is away giving care?"

The answer today might be a Senior Companion.

For qualifying Americans with special needs, the United States Government provides funds to allow qualified volunteers to receive an hourly, non-taxable stipend and transportation costs to provide much needed assistance.

The program also serves as added income for the volunteers, in effect benefiting both the volunteer and the recipient of their services.

I work as a Senior Companion and here is what I will be doing this week in 2017.

Monday I will spend three hours with a senior male whose primary need is for a friend who can spend time with him, occasionally transport him to the bank, the store, a doctor's appointment, etc. We will probably play pool at a senior center and eat lunch together there. He will pay $3 for his lunch, and so will I, but my cost of $3 will be reimbursed when I submit my time sheet at the end of the month. My mileage to meet with him will be reimbursed also, as well as any mileage for short trips he needs to take to and from the senior center, store, etc.

Tuesday I will take a senor male who has Alzheimer's to the same senior center to play bingo, have our $3 lunches, and home where we may play tic-tac-toe, or I will read to him from a picture book, while his care giver wife has 3 or 4 hours to do needed shopping, go to the dentist, get a pedicure, visit a friend, etc.

Wednesday I will take a senior male for his weekly shopping trips to a nearby store and pharmacy for his groceries and medications. We will also go to the senior center for our lunches, and we will have time to visit, play a game, or on occasion go to one of his medical appointments during the four hours we meet each week.

Thursday will be a repeat of time with my Alzheimer's client and respite time for his care giver.

Friday (or one day each month) I will have in-service Senior Companion training with other volunteers in our group with lunch provided. Later in the day I will take another senior, male client and assist him with his transportation and weekly shopping which takes just an hour to an hour and a half. If this is not the monthly training day, I will also meet and assist another client in the same way and take him to lunch and some companionship activity.

In our group, women volunteers may spend their week doing many of the same things I do, but for senior women clients. Some may also need transportation, or assistance writing letters, reading mail, or just need time with someone who cares about their concerns and daily needs.

All Senior Companions are vetted, fingerprinted, licensed to drive their own properly insured vehicles, and meet the maximum household income requirements all volunteers must meet to participate.

Volunteers should commit to serving a minimum of one year, though our group has many volunteers who have been serving for five, ten, or more years.

Generally speaking, most areas of the United States need additional volunteers for fellow Americans who really would benefit from being served by their neighbors.

If you have some time you can dedicate to helping others facing special needs, why not check out the Senior Companion program in your state?

If you need this kind of help for someone you know, contact your local Senior Companion program director. Find out what help is available.

____________

© 2017-2018 Demas W. Jasper All rights reserved.

Help and Helping are a phone call away!

Call  your local Senior Companion Program today.  It can make a difference in your life, and the lives of others in need.
Call your local Senior Companion Program today. It can make a difference in your life, and the lives of others in need. | Source

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    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      9 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      More details have been added to this article on 3/14/2018.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      14 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Dear Dora,

      As I wrote to Eric, this is one program that actually works, and is satisfying a need. D.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      14 months ago from The Caribbean

      Thank you for sharing this valuable information which can benefit both the caregivers and those in need of care. What a productive, satisfying experience for the senior volunteers; which in many cases may be answers to prayers! Thanks also for being a good example to many.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      14 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Dear Savvy Yves,

      The real thanks comes from receiving such comments as "You really made my day. Thanks." Besides those, being involved with a group of "like" minded servers is also a reward. Some of them do two clients a day, five days a week, heaping those feel-good rewards on their broad shoulders and treasuring up rewards where they will ultimately count one day in the not too distant future. Love, D.

    • Perspycacious profile imageAUTHOR

      Demas W Jasper 

      14 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Dear Eric,

      Truly this is one government program from which taxpayers get a real "bang for the buck!" For many it means care given at home instead of terribly expensive care elsewhere. For the 24/7 care givers it means 17/7 care giving, and often it means relief where there has been none. If you want to know one wife's version of what Alzheimer's care is really like (and she fortunately had good help from family and friends) read Judy Seegmiller's book entitled "Big Al". It documents a road no care giver should have to travel alone.

    • savvydating profile image

      Yves 

      14 months ago

      Congratulations! I honestly appreciate the work you do.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      14 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you friend for filling me in on such a wonderful two way street of helping our neighbors. It would seem this program is really beneficial to the Companion. From a quick check there are millions and millions of hours put into this yearly. People helping people with a boost from our Gov. Fantastic!

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