The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program
“Put Your Experience to Work” and choose how and where to serve. The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program engages people 55 and better how to apply the skills and wisdom they have acquired throughout their lives and how they can channel it to make a difference in the lives of others. National Service is at the forefront of the Corporation for National and Community Service who guides the efforts of RSVP to ensure volunteer work contributes to real and lasting change in the community. In 2013 490 RSVP volunteers provided over 85,000 hours of service to the community.
Our program has been enhanced and the energy has been directed into six focus areas Healthy Futures, Education, Disaster Services, Economic Opportunity, Environmental Stewardship and Veterans and Military Families plus Community Involvement Programs.
As our participation in the community is transformed to meet the growing needs of our focus areas, more new and different opportunities will be offered.
Signature programs offered by the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program include:
Thresholds and Decisions
This critical thinking and decision-making course has a twenty-five year history in the Northeast. It is presented to inmates in county jails by trained RSVP volunteers who meet one-on-one in weekly one-hour sessions with selected inmates for twelve weeks. These sessions are supported by a weekly two-hour group session that reinforces the five steps of good decision-making. The recidivism rate of graduates of the Thresholds and Decisions Program is 14%, compared to the recidivism rate of the general inmate population, which is over 60%.
The Pen Pal Program
RSVP’s award-winning Pen Pal Program partners third grade students with caring RSVP seniors who, through an exchange of letters, foster an interest in reading and writing to improve language, written communication and social skills. This unique partnership promotes nurturing relationships that share experiential wisdom and encourage the child’s growth into a confident, responsible and caring individual. The Pen Pal Program started in Nashua in 2004.
RSVP Bone Builders
The RSVP Bone Builders Program relies upon weight training and balance exercises to protect against fractures caused by osteoporosis by increasing muscular strength, balance and bone density. Balance exercises aimed at preventing falls and fractures are key components of the program. Volunteer Trainers are qualified by attending a one-day, all-day workshop conducted by experienced instructors. Volunteer Trainers are often former participants and some actually suffer from osteoporosis. Studies published in the New England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical Association show that elderly women who participated in a weight-training program twice weekly for a year gained an average of 1% of bone density. Participants also reported increased strength, better balance, more energy and feelings of well-being. Participants meet twice a week for a minimum of six months. Bone Builders started in Nashua in 2010 at Davidson Landing; the program has expanded to include additional sites in Nashua and Manchester.
See schedule below:
Davidson Landing II
145 Ledge St.
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 – 11:15 am
(class started April 14, 2010)
101 Burke St.
Monday and Wednesdays from 2-3:15pm
(class started Jan. 10, 2011)
870 Hayward St.
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4-5:15 pm
(class started June 14, 2011)
76 Temple Street
Tuesdays and Fridays from 10-11:15 am
Catholic Medical Center – Wellness Center
100 McGregor Street
Thursdays from 5:30-6:30pm
(class starts Thursday, May 24, 2012)
Nashua Senior Activity Center
70 Temple Street
Tuesdays & Thursdays from 2:00-3:00pm
(class started February 5, 2013)
Hudson Recreation Center
2 Oakwood Street
Tuesdays & Thursdays from 10:00-11:00am
RSVP Fixit Corps
The RSVP Fixit Corps provides minor home maintenance and repair for seniors 60 years or older and disabled citizens living in their own homes in Hillsborough County. Qualified volunteers who have experience in the construction trades or general maintenance provide the skills necessary to complete the repairs. Clients are responsible for the materials needed to complete the repair; an affordable donation is encouraged to allow the program to continue offering services to others.