WMKY

MSU awarded $103K to expand senior volunteer service

Jul 19, 2017

Credit Morehead State University

Morehead State University Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) has received a Senior Corps RSVP grant of $103,767 from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to support volunteers serving in Boyd, Carter, Elliott, Greenup and Lawrence counties.

The funds were awarded as part of a Senior Corps grant competition to expand RSVP to new geographic areas. The MSU RSVP currently serves Bath, Menifee, Montgomery, Morgan and Rowan counties. The new grant will expand services into Boyd, Carter, Elliott, Greenup and Lawrence counties.

The purpose of MSU’s RSVP is to provide challenging and satisfying volunteer assignments for people 55-plus, thus enabling them to remain active and to serve their communities in a volunteer capacity. By donating their time and skills, they provide non-profit organizations with invaluable services that make community organizations more effective so that more people can be reached, more services can be provided and problems can be solved.

Volunteers in collaboration with the school systems in the five new counties will teach opioid prevention to third through seventh grade students. Research shows that prevention is the key to preventing opioid abuse.

“MSU RSVP is excited to expand into the FIVCO region,” said Teresa Judd, RSVP project director.

Established in 1971, RSVP engages Americans age 55 and older in citizen service that addresses the nation’s most pressing challenges – everything from fighting the opioid epidemic, reducing crime and reviving cities, connecting veterans to jobs and benefits, preparing today’s students for tomorrow’s jobs, ensuring seniors age independently and with dignity, and helping Americans rebuild their lives following a disaster.

While serving, RSVP volunteers also improve their own lives, staying active and healthy through service. A growing body of research points to mental and physical health benefits associated with volunteering, including lower mortality rates, increased strength and energy, decreased rates of depression and fewer physical limitations.

In 2016, more than 208,000 Senior Corps RSVP volunteers served in communities across the country. Through community and faith-based organizations, RSVP volunteers served more than 300,000 veterans, mentored more than 78,000 children and provided independent living services to more than 797,000 older adults.

According to the annual Volunteering and Civic Life in America report by CNCS, more than 21 million Americans 55-plus contributed more than 3.3 billion hours of service in their communities. Based on the Independent Sector's estimate of the average value of a volunteer hour, their collective service provides a yearly economic benefit valued at $78 billion.

For additional information on the organization or how volunteers can sign up, contact Judd at 606-783-5124 or tajudd@moreheadstate.edu, or visit http://www.moreheadstate.edu/rsvp