Stories to Share: Helping Seniors Write About Their Lives

There was one about a blind date. There was another about keeping kosher, but sneaking BLTs. And then there was one about our family’s store surviving the Great Depression thanks to help from a friend. Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter Pop Pop used to love telling stories. He was 96 when he passed away last fall, which gave us almost 30 years together. That’s a lot of time to talk-and a lot of time to listen. I feel …

Volunteering: Going Far Together

September 11 was AARP’s annual Day of Service where all employees can volunteer their time and talents to a charity of their choice. Along with 10 other AARP employees, I volunteered at Martha’s Table, a 33-year-old Washington, DC charity that, among other projects, feeds 1,100 people daily, many of them homeless. They also run a preschool and after school program for children from low income families.  As the Food Prep Volunteers, we chopped our way through what seemed like bottomless …

Ideas to Help in Your Community on 9/11 and Every Day

On Sept. 11, 2013, nearly two-thirds of AARP employees will not show up for work. Instead, they will be gardening, painting, reading to children, sorting and cleaning eyeglass donations, making toys and blankets for shelter animals, offering hygiene kits and friendly conversation to the local homeless, creating cards for sick children; visiting nursing home residents, removing toxic plants from the pastures of a therapeutic horseback riding program, and preparing and serving breakfast at a soup kitchen.  All of this “giving …

The Beginning of a Beautiful (Long-Distance) Friendship

One Friday last month, I finally broke my news to Arthur. “I have something I need to tell you,” I said, taking a deep breath. “I’m going to graduate school.” “That’s great!” “For gerontology.” “To study old people?” “Yep. And it’s in Ohio.” “Ohio?!” That’s the part I had been nervous about – telling him I’m leaving New York. Apart from his time in the Navy and a year sabbatical in China, Arthur has lived in New York his whole …

Summertime Learning: 2 Ways to Make Summer Fun for Kids

School’s out. It’s the time of year that was once reserved for kids to help their on their family farms to maintain and pull in the crops. Now, it’s a time of leisure, play and (with any luck) visits to the grandparents. However, research shows that kids lose ground academically during the summer months unless they use the skills they learn in school throughout the year. Some studies suggest that the loss is up to three months of in-classroom work. …

AARP Experience Corps: Working with Kids Yields Rewards

Kids Aren’t the Only Ones Who Win with Experience Corps In 2007, a Washington University research study confirmed what volunteers have been consistently saying all along.  AARP Experience Corps volunteers become more active and energetic as they participate in the program. From the study: “At the end of the academic year, about two-thirds of the low-activity group was classified as high-activity, as they became more active in [non-Experience Corps] activities. ” Experience Corps members become more active through their work …