The University of Maine Center on Aging RSVP Awarded $99,202 to Support Senior Volunteer Service

The University of Maine Center on Aging Awarded $99,202 to Support Senior Volunteer Service

Funding will support 119 AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers

The Center on Aging has received an AmeriCorps Seniors RSVP re-competition grant of $99,202 (base award for year one of six years) from the AmeriCorps federal agency to support 119 RSVP volunteers serving in Hancock, Penobscot, Piscataquis, and Washington Counties where the organization has been providing service opportunities for older Americans (age 55+) as an RSVP project since 2003. Every six years, RSVPs undergo a competitive grant process to determine whether or not it should remain as the current sponsor. This award permits the Center on Aging to continue to oversee RSVP at the University of Maine under the leadership of its longtime director, Paula Burnett.

“Winning the 2021 Americorps Seniors RSVP Competition Award was terrific news. It underscores the University of Maine Center on Aging’s long-term commitment, under the leadership of the programs’ committed staff, to promote the state’s health and well-being by creating a critical vehicle through which older Mainers can share their wisdom and expertise through civic engagement in their local communities.” – Dr. Lenard Kaye, Director UM Center on Aging.

With this funding, UM Center on Aging Retired & Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) will leverage the skills and experience of seniors in our four-county service area to meet community needs. These AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers will serve to fight food insecurity, read aloud at childcare centers and Head Starts to improve literacy skills, assist at adult day service programs, lead senior wellness activities, and serve in other capacities including virtual ones, as we adapt to the challenges to serve while staying safe due to Covid-19.

To join RSVP and be matched with a volunteer position, please contact Paula Burnett, RSVP Director, at 262-7926 or Carrie Limeburner, Program Coordinator, at 262-7924 to complete the registration and interview process to get started serving your community.

AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers stay healthy and active through service, improving their own lives as they improve the lives of others. A growing body of research affirms the numerous mental and physical health benefits of volunteerism, including lower mortality rates, decreased rates of depression, and increased strength and energy.

Today, AmeriCorps Seniors engages approximately 195,000 older Americans in service at 29,800 locations across the United States and territories through its Foster Grandparents Program, Senior Companion Program, and RSVP. Established in 1971, RSVP engages Americans age 55 and older in service, responding to our nation’s most pressing challenges. The UMaine Center on Aging RSVP is one of five RSVPs in the State, and we have over 30 partnering agencies for volunteer placements in our service area.