Baldwinsville Football Team Brightens The Lives of Local Seniors
The seniors who live at the Emeritus at West Side Manor assisted living center in Liverpool, NY, count themselves lucky, and it is because of the Baldwinsville football team. The football team players visit the home on a regular basis and they spend time with the residents and work hard to make the lives of these seniors better in many ways. One of the most anticipated events for both the players and the home residents is the annual state fair. The players on the team volunteer to accompany the seniors to the state fair, and they help to push wheelchairs and ensure that the seniors have a terrific time.
Residents in the assisted living facility gain a degree of independence, but what is even more important is the socialization and companionship that the players offer. The age difference between the two groups has not been an issue, and the teens enjoy the time spent together just as much as the older individuals. During the annual event the assisted living facility seems empty, and few residents choose not to take part and enjoy the outing.
Football Team Volunteering is a Year Round Activity
The fair visit has made the local newspaper for a number of years, but this trip is just one of many activities and events that the players arrange for the seniors. The football team spends time each month volunteering at the home and they make an effort to become part of the lives of the seniors. Players are available to talk with the residents and just spend time together. Some of the seniors may not have family or friends who live close by, and just having someone who cares can have a huge impact on their lives.
The players take care to match the activities with the interests of the resident that they volunteer with. One individual enjoys wood carving, so the player who teamed with this resident arranged to visit a wood carving event which the senior enjoyed greatly. The teens do not expect anything in return, and they have found that they look forward to the visits and the time spent with the residents.
Both Teens and Seniors Benefit
Crossing the age gap allows both groups to see a number of benefits. The team players find that they have developed more compassion for seniors, and the residents have a new view and appreciation of the younger generation as well. Without the time volunteered by the football team the residents may not get out as much, and some would have few if any visitors. The teens gain a sense of accomplishment when they give back to the community, and they learn valuable skills that will help them in life.
We welcome your opinions and comments on the questions below. Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to comment.
- Have you ever volunteered to work with seniors? Why or why not?
- How could you make the life of a senior in your community better?
- Are you willing to give up your free time to help enrich the life of someone else?
- How many hours each week can you volunteer in your community?
- How many nursing homes and assisted living facilities are near your neighborhood?