There are many ways you can make a difference
Aging with Dignity relies on people like you to help spread the word to others about improving care in times of serious illness. Here’s what you can do:
Spread the Word!
If you are not able to host a party or workshop, you can still let others know about Aging with Dignity and Five Wishes. Tell your family and friends, doctor, attorney and any organizations you are affiliated with about Five Wishes. Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper or call your local TV station’s news department to tell them how Five Wishes has helped you.
Make a Hope Today Connection
Each of us has a daily opportunity to connect with someone in need and bring them hope. It can be as simple as checking on and spending time with an elderly neighbor who is alone or connecting with an individual or family in need. These Hope Today Connections – small acts of human kindness – pay large dividends to both the giver and the recipient. Here’s how to make a Hope Today Connection:
- Start by actively trying to seek those in need. Contact your Area Agency on Aging, Long Term Care Ombudsman's office or elder services provider to see if they know of someone in your community who may need a little extra help. Your place of worship may have an elderly outreach ministry.
- Look in your own neighborhood for an elderly person who lives alone or could use friendship and assistance. Make it a family project.
- Connect with the homebound via telephone or e-mail, particularly if you’re someone who is hesitant or unable to be with people one-on-one. Communication should be made on a regular basis, the more often the better.
- “Meals on Wheels” is a great program that provides meals to the homebound, and your local chapter is in need of volunteers all the time. Why not take it a step further? Ask the person to whom you’re delivering meals if you may stop by later and talk further with him or her at a later date. Your visit will truly be the highlight of the day.
- Have you ever noticed an elderly person sitting alone outside a store? Perhaps he’s waiting for a ride home from his “shopping” trip that he takes just to feel involved and part of society. He may indeed be quite alone and in need of simple human interaction. Can you help?
- Those who care for aging family members are often in great need of relief and respite themselves. Contact local support groups and ask if there are things you could do to help ease someone else’s burden. This can even include simple things like running errands and helping with transportation.
- Nursing homes and the larger assisted living facilities have an Activities Director who can be a great source for finding out who in the facility is in the greatest need of companionship. Ask if there is a resident who is reclusive or who seldom gets out of the room to attend the activities and social events. Bring your children and teenagers as a way of showing them how one generation cares for another.
- Many communities host special events that always need volunteers. These can include community-wide cleanups and/or make-a-difference day events that help the elderly stay in their own homes. Let the organizers know if you have special equipment or skills, like carpentry, plumbing or electrical.
Contribute Online: Aging with Dignity is a private, non-profit organization. We don't take a penny of government money and need your charitable contribution to continue our vital work. Aging with Dignity is a 501(c)(3) organization, so your charitable donation is fully tax deductible.