County Line—Seniors make
—DON LEONARD, SANDOVAL COUNTY COMMISSION CHAIRMAN
Trying to balance dwindling federal dollars with the challenges
that rapid growth is sparking across Sandoval County would be an
impossible task without the tremendous contributions of hundreds
of senior volunteers—the young-at-heart who are doing so many
things to help make life better for all of us.
I had the pleasure a few weeks ago of spending some time with more
than two hundred County residents, ages fifty-five and older, who
attended an appreciation ceremony recognizing their dedication and
hard work on behalf of all County residents. The volunteers are
actively involved in the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP),
Senior Companion, Foster Grandparents, and the County’s other
senior volunteer organizations.
These are the so-called “seniors” who are so hot they
sizzle as they help friends and neighbors in all walks of life.
Last month was “Older Americans Month,” a time when
the nation was reminded of what many County residents already know:
If you want something done, just ask the people with fresh ideas
formed by lifetimes of experience.
Sandoval County’s retired volunteers are making things happen.
Thanks to their unwavering efforts, many other residents throughout
the County are living meaningful, more productive lives.
County RSVP and Senior Companion Program volunteers are delivering
meals, and working in schools, in homes, and in senior and youth
centers across our County. They provide transportation for other
residents to medical appointments and help provide independent living
for clients referred to the programs by hospitals, senior centers,
families or State agencies. Other County volunteers, meanwhile,
are staffing our libraries, our non-profit organizations, and helping
out in some County offices.
The phrase “couch potato” isn’t in their vocabulary.
In their “spare” time, they provide companionship, help
our elderly pay bills, administer medication, and shop for others.
The volunteers fill gaps and provide services for our social workers,
assist healthcare providers, and serve as role models by working
While federal funding in recent years has been shifted away from
senior programs nationwide, Sandoval County has continued to enhance
and improve its senior services—thanks to the three hundred-twenty
County residents who are volunteering their time and services.
Studies by the County’s Senior Program staff show many of
the County’s retired seniors work as much as twenty hours
each week as volunteers, offering time and labor that is vital to
the large numbers of residents who depend on their help. We owe
them our sincere gratitude and support for their efforts to serve
in our communities.
The volunteers come from all walks of life and bring a full spectrum
of experiences. The combined efforts of the County’s Senior
Program volunteers exceed 142,400 hours a year. The dollar value
of the number of hours they provide totals $733,422 annually.
Questions or comments for Commissioner Leonard can be mailed to
him at Sandoval County Administrative Offices, P. O. Box 40, Bernalillo,
Women helped through stages of divorce
The New Mexico Commission on the Status of Women, Displaced Homemakers
Office, is again offering the popular free classes on Women in Transition:
Divorce, Money and Power, addressing short- and long-term issues
for women in transition due to divorce or other life change.
This four-week series brings professionals from the community to
share their expertise and assist women in moving through the phases
of the divorce process.
Classes are ongoing and meet at the Commission Office, 300 San
Mateo Boulevard NE, Suite 101, in Albuquerque. Seating is limited,
so registration is required. Contact Lorraine Bantista for additional
information and registration, at 222-6600.