The Senior Corps is part of the Corporation for National & Community Service (CNS) and a program of Elder Services of Cape Cod and the Islands. Elder Services began its sponsorship of the Senior Corps in 1973 joining 750 other RSVP chapters throughout the country.
Today, we have over 500 volunteers serving on Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard in three key areas:
· Adults Benefiting Children (ABC)
· Friends and Neighbors (FANS)
· The Senior Environment Corps (SEC)
Each of our 75+ Service Partners use Senior Corps members to address a "serious local need" which has been identified through research and assessments. Service Partners must also provide potential volunteers with a Service Activity Description approved by the Senior Corps office.
This job description will outline the training and resources needed to perform the service, the length of time the service is expected to take each week, whether the service is long or short term, and, finally, what the measure of success will be. Twice a year Senior Corps staff report back to CNS and Congress on the impact that our members are making in the community.
WHO CAN JOIN?
Any person aged fifty-five and older can join RSVP. There are no minimum requirements for education or experience. At your initial interview, you will be asked to complete an application and to show proof of your identity in order for staff to conduct a CORI (Criminal Offender Record Information) check. Also, at that time our volunteer coordinators will explore with you the types of volunteer experiences which might best suit your skills and interests.
After the CORI check is completed, you will be referred to one or more service partners for a second interview. They may require an additional CORI check as we are prevented, by law, from sharing your information with other agencies.
New members who join the Senior Environment Corps or our Three R's Program (tutoring or mentoring children in reading & math skills) will be asked to take training and to attend regularly scheduled follow ups.
WHY SHOULD I JOIN?
By joining the Senior Corps you are joining an elite group of senior volunteers who are performing meaningful community service. Training will be provided to you free of charge. In addition, you will know that the service you provide makes an impact on the community.
The Senior Corps is also part of the U.S. Freedom Corps after the attacks of September 11, 2001. All of your service with the Senior Corps counts as part of the 4,000 hours of community service requested of each American over a lifetime.
All members of RSVP are covered by free accident and liability insurance while they are traveling to and from their volunteer jobs and while they are volunteering.
Elder Services and Barnstable County also provide funding so that limited mileage reimbursement is available to volunteers. There is an annual recognition event and more local and specialized volunteer get-togethers throughout the year.
SENIOR CORPS MEMBERS ARE EVERYWHERE!
You will find over 500 members of the Senior Corps working at dozens of non-profit agencies throughout the Cape and the Islands, including:
· Service Centers and Food Pantries
· Wildlife Sanctuaries
· Schools and After School Programs
· Transportation Programs
· Crisis Intervention Programs
· Massachusetts Military Reservation
Volunteers deliver Meals on Wheels, drive patients to medical appointments, assist families in crisis, visit the homebound and read to the visually impaired.
Older volunteers can be found testing homes for radon gas, leading osteoporosis prevention exercise classes, maintaining trails at the National Seashore and protecting endangered species.
If you would like to join the Senior Corps, please call us at 508-394-4630 or 800-244-4630 for an interview. If you are located out of the mid-Cape are, we can interview you closer to home.