How to Be a Friend to Seniors in Your Community
By Bob Shannon
If you’re looking for some great ways to befriend and care for aging adults in your community, this guide is for you. Fraud Stoppers has compiled a list of resources with info on helping older adults, whether you’re hoping to volunteer with local organizations or offer private transportation and yard work services to seniors in your neighborhood. To explore some of the things you can do to be a good friend to seniors near you, read on!
- Assist seniors with potential mortgage fraud issues if they’re threatened with foreclosure. Point them toward Fraud Stoppers to help save their homes.
- Help senior pet owners better care for their pets. Ideas include volunteering to pet sit while seniors are at doctor’s appointments or running errands and stopping by to walk their dog a few times a week.
- You can also help them connect with a professional service to take care of house-related tasks. For example, you can find expert handyman services on a website like Angi. Be sure to hire a service that has a good reputation with their clients.
- Spend a few afternoons a week or month with seniors who are at risk of social isolation, especially those who live alone. Social isolation is a growing problem for seniors and has risen even more due to the pandemic, and it can lead to physical problems like decreased appetite and nutrient intake and mental health issues like depression.
- Create a community care plan for local seniors who reside alone or don’t have relatives living nearby.
- Teach technical skills to seniors and help them connect with their long-distance loved ones more easily.
- Make sure they can easily connect with friends and family long distance through quality internet service and a reliable phone plan.
- Help seniors connect with local friends to help boost their social network. With a site like ClassFinders, you can even help them connect with former schoolmates to rekindle a friendship.
- Gather a group of volunteers to help local seniors with tasks such as raking leaves, weeding, and gardening.
- Volunteer with a local organization that connects you to seniors in need of companions, drivers, healthy meals, and other types of assistance.
- Drive seniors to and from medical appointments and shopping trips.
If you’re hoping to care for and befriend seniors in your community — specifically those who may be isolated because they have few family members living nearby — these tips and resources will help you to get started. Whether you drive local seniors to medical appointments or help your older neighbors with yard work and household tasks, you’ll be making a positive difference in the lives of those around you.