New Program Creation: Volunteerism Program for Seniors

Ethelon created, through a grant of the TIMA Charitable Foundation, a six-month pilot volunteer program for retirees aged 65 and over. The program has two axes, Skill-Based Volunteering and Lifelong Learning.

The first axis of the program, Skills-Based Volunteering, matches persons aged 65 and over who have particular skills and hobbies with nonprofit organizations that are seeking volunteers possessing such skills. During the first three months of the program’s imple-mentation, 82 seniors expressed their interest in the Skills-Based Volunteering Program, with participants in short-and long-term volunteer opportunities.

The second axis of Life-Long Learning involves the instruction of educational programs directed to retired seniors for them to be able to develop their personal skills. There were over 100 applications to the Life-Long Learning Program during the first trimester. 55 seniors participated in English and Computer instruction in classes held in Athens and Thessaloniki and 64 participants took part in health workshops. During the following 3 months of the program’s implementation, Ethelon will collaborate with the Open Protec-tion Centers for the Elderly (OPCEs) of the Irakleio and Agios Dimitrios municipalities in order to offer English for Tourism and First Aid instruction to the seniors. The goal is for over 100 seniors from both municipalities to participate in these classes. In addition, English classes, Computer instruction, and Health workshops will be offered to approxi-mately 60 seniors residing in the municipality of Athens and 30 in Thessaloniki. Lastly, social service opportunities such as park cleaning, tree planting, and painting of schools or other public buildings will be offered to seniors. This program is especially significant for seniors as persons who have been professionally active for years often find it chal-lenging to adjust to daily life during retirement.

For more information regarding the program and the grant:

http://www.timafoundation.org/en/grant/157-g-ethelon