During National Volunteer Week I’d like to stop and say thank you. Thank you to the thousands of AARP volunteers who are fighting for families as part of our multistate advocacy campaigns across every state, D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. By giving your time and energy to advocate for the 50-plus and their families, you’ve helped to:
- Pass bills in nearly every state to support millions of family caregivers and the older parents, spouses and other loved ones they care for
- Pass bills to help millions of Americans have the tools they need to retire with confidence
- Fight to ensure people pay only what is reasonable and justified for their utilities
Here are snapshots of just a few of our incredible volunteers.
Pat from Connecticut:
Pat helped AARP Connecticut champion the CARE Act, a new law that supports family caregivers when their loved ones go into the hospital and as they transition home. Recently she had a caregiver thank her for her work. Pat shared,
“She [the caregiver] said, would you go back to AARP and all the volunteers there and tell them thank you. Thank you for standing up for the seniors. Thank you for standing up for the people of Connecticut.” Pat continues, “And then I realized that’s why I volunteer.”
Earl G. from Ohio:
“I believe that AARP performs an essential service for members and all Ohioans to make sure they receive a fair shake on the issues we support, and I am happy to volunteer my time for this important work.”
Earl represents AARP and the interests of Ohioans 50-plus in his service on the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) Telecommunication Study. He’s working to make sure Ohioans only pay what’s fair and justified for reliable utility service.
Monica S. from Florida:
“The needs of caregivers vastly outweigh the resources we have today. We are seeing the tip of the iceberg of the caregiver crisis. I am a proud AARP volunteer addressing this issue.”
When it comes to supporting family caregivers, Monica’s doing it all. She advocates for more support for family caregivers and their loved ones at the state capitol, organizes conferences, recruits for events, is helping to build a caregiving coalition and much more.
Julia from Texas:
Julia is fighting for more support for family caregivers — a subject near and dear to her heart, being a caregiver herself.
“I am so glad that AARP for this legislative session is trying to work in this area especially to give caregivers some measure of support.”
"When you're married and your significant other gets ill, you truly experience what it means to be a caregiver," says Julia of San Antonio.
Posted by AARP Texas on Monday, April 10, 2017
Michael and Marilyn W. from North Dakota:
During the 2017 legislative session Michael and Marilyn have enthusiastically worked to support family caregivers. One bill they helped pass was recently signed into law and will help family caregivers get some of the relief and resources they need.
Even more impressive, Mike and Marilyn live 200 miles from the state capital. Yet they have made multiple trips to Bismarck to help fight for family caregivers.
Thank you to Mike, Marilyn, Earl, Monica, Julia, Pat and ALL our amazing AARP volunteers who devote so much of their time and energy to help others.
Would you like to volunteer with AARP? Visit aarp.org/getinvolved.
Elaine Ryan is the vice president of state advocacy and strategy integration (SASI) for AARP. She leads a team of dedicated legislative staff members who work with AARP state offices to advance advocacy with governors and state legislators, helping people 50-plus attain and maintain their health and financial security.