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Two successful initiatives in the United States tap into the experience of senior volunteers

18/06/2012
Two successful initiatives in the United States tap into the experience of senior volunteers © aarp.org

AARP, the largest organization serving the needs of people 50+ in the United States, recently joined forces with Experience Corps to help improve student literacy in disadvantaged schools.

The new AARP Experience Corps born out of this relationship taps into the experience and dedication of older Americans who want to tutor and mentor youth in their communities.

With 2,000 members and operating in 19 cities across the US, the senior volunteers enrolled in the programme help to improve literacy primarily in kindergarten through third grade of underserved schools. Caring, retired adults are selected as volunteers through an application and enrolment process. They commit to serving for an entire school year, frequently in schools in their own communities so that they directly give back to their neighbourhoods.

Another AARP successful 50+ volunteer programme is Create the Good, an online network encouraging seniors to share tools and ideas to help make a difference in their communities. The website allows seniors to search for local volunteer opportunities, but they also can find ideas for self-directed activities and how-to videos for simple service projects like weatherizing homes, starting healthy walking groups, fighting fraud, preparing for a hurricane and other needs.

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