The Senior Companion Program provides support and companionship to those that need increased assistance for daily living tasks and helps to improve quality of life. The program aims to keep seniors independent longer and to provide assistance to family and caregivers. Senior Companions serve 15-40 hours per week helping an average of 2-4 adult clients. Volunteers serve in their own local community in client’s homes as well as senior centers and living facilities.
New volunteers with go through an orientation process, training, shadowing of other volunteers, and completing onboarding documentation. Each individual will complete an income screening to determine qualification for the tax-free hourly stipend along with mileage reimbursement. The program has clients referred through Independent Senior Agencies, public and private non-profit agencies, governmental agencies, and proprietary Health Care agencies. Each referral source has a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the program.
To receive information about the Senior Companion Program, please contact (231) 726-1200.
Who is eligible?
- Applicants must be 55 years or older
- Must meet Federal income guidelines to receive stipend. If income exceeds eligibility guidelines, volunteers can serve alongside stipend volunteers with equal and consistent treatment
- Undergo both State and Federal background checks
- Be in good physical health and be able to serve the frail elderly or adults who have one or more physical, emotional, or mental health limitations
Who Benefits from the Program?
Volunteers: The senior volunteers benefit by remaining engaged in their community and receiving a sense of purpose, meaning, and value from their volunteer services. Volunteers that have contact with others are more likely to remain healthy, both physically and mentally. Giving back to the community increases one’s sense of self-worth.
Clients: Participating agencies are able to refer their clients and benefit from the volunteer’s service. These client services include: companionship, supporting relationships, transportation to appointments, attending outings/community events, assistance with shopping, and engagement in personal interests and hobbies.
Meet Kay Wolf
“I like to make the elderly happy and put a smile on their face. It gets them out of the house. They enjoy shopping yard sales and going out to lunch. It keeps me active and gets me out of the house also. I love talking with and visiting with older people. They are full of wisdom. I enjoy Barbara Puff. We have a good time when we are together. She is a sweetheart. A very pleasant person.”