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How Senior Services Can Get You Your Heart’s Desire Ep 92

Image of Ellen Williamson, who talks about Senior ServicesEllen Williamson retired in 2007 after 36 years of Federal service with the Department of Defense.  She was also a professor for 15 years as a “jobby”.  I love this combination of hobby and job, or a hobby with pay!

Anyway, she continues to consult with firms interested in Federal Government Acquisition on an ad hoc basis.

Although she has varied interests, including travel, hiking, charity and cultural events, we spent most of our time talking about a senior services club she belongs to called GetOffYourRockers.org.

I took the liberty of going on the website to see what this senior services club was all about.  Here is a list of currently available activities:

  • Biking.  Every Monday
  • Bowling.  The second and fourth Thursdays
  • Camping
  • Chair Yoga
  • Charitable Work
  • Cultural Events
  • Foot Golf (I’d never heard of this before now!)
  • Golf
  • Hiking (once a month on Fridays)
  • Kayaking and Stand Up Paddle Boarding
  • Potlucks
  • Sailing
  • Skiing
  • Social Hours
  • Tennis
  • Travel
  • Ushering (volunteering at a theatre)
  • Walking (every evening)

If you can’t get your heart’s desire with GOYR, then you are a tough nut to crack for sure!

Not only does this senior services club help her get out and do what she likes to do, but it also helps her keep in touch with friends, and make new ones.

In addition, it provides support for people who are recently retired, or just thinking about it.  You can hang out with someone who’s already retired, and you can talk to someone who can help you recognize that retirement doesn’t have to be scary.

Ellen reminded me that change of any kind, including retirement, can take up to a year and a half to be OK with it.

We’ve had many guests say the same thing.  I think joining a club like this is a great way to go.

But what if your town doesn’t have a senior services club like GOYR?  You can start one of your own.  These days, Meetup makes it easy, and we’ve had other episodes that talk about Meetup. Go check them out and then start or join a club of your own.

This post about retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

RE030: Vintage Dresses and Gowns

Dorothy Nicol with her Vintage Dresses and GownsIn this episode, Henry talks with Dorothy Nicol about her vintage dresses and gowns.

Dorothy is 87 years old. She has lived her entire life in the small town of  Lismore which is located in Victoria Australia. She absolutely loves her hometown and she wanted to do something to help the town and the community when she retired.

Dorothy says her hobby is living in the 20th century

Dorothy has an amazing collection which includes thousands of 20th-century vintage dresses and gowns. She began collection many years ago and the collection grew so much, she needed more space! Henry and Dorothy talk about how she purchased a property she had cherished since she was a young girl, and turned it into a small tourist attraction. Sometimes Dorothy feels like she is unorganized because she has so many items! She admits she isn’t like a boutique shop, she prefers the quaint, charming feeling of her store. She likes for people to come into her shop and be able to look around and touch the items. Touching most often is not allowed with vintage garments.

There are a lot of fascinating stories that go along with vintage dresses and gowns

Dorothy is very sentimental. You can hear her well up with emotion as she talks about these stores and the wonderful people she has met throughout the years.

Henry also takes a walk down memory lane with Dorothy as she reminisces about growing up in the town she loves so much. She began working at the age of 16 as a telephonist which was a manual switchboard Operator. She held that same job until she married in 1950 and never worked anywhere else. If you have seen old movies where the operators are pulling plus, that is what Dorothy did!.

She has never learned to use the computer and is full of nostalgia. She prefers a time when lives were a lot more uncomplicated and there was more of a community feeling.

This post about retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

Responsible Travel: Episode 076

Tammie Ferguson on responsible travel

What is responsible travel?

I spoke with Tammie Ferguson who owns Love in Action Travel. Don’t you just love that name? Tammie talks about socially responsible travel. Tammie created Love in Action travel for people who want to combine their love of travel with their passion for serving others and making a positive difference.

We spent a good amount of time talking about “Voluntourism” Trips. They plan itineraries to different countries such as Guatemala, Haiti, and Puerto Rico. People can sign up and join on the trip. These are 9-10 day itineraries with 5 days of that being spent building a home.

 Some of the projects they work on are:

  • Habitat for Humanity global village home builds
  • Serving orphanages
  • Creating Healthy Home kits, including smokeless stoves and water filters

Why Responsible Travel?

  • Great opportunity to meet new people
  • Explore a different country
  • Learn a new skill
  • Rejuvenate
  • Give back

Although prices vary and can change, Tammie has a trip planned to Guatemala in June and the (2017) fee is $1,870. The trip fee includes meals, lodging, any cultural activities, ground transportation, the community service project that you will be involved in, and even travel medical insurance. You pay for the flight, money for souvenirs if you want any, and bring extra for that massage after all your hard work!

Tammie also talks about the other trips she plans which include Agritourism Experiences, Cultural Tours, and Fathom Cruises

Today’s Freebie, 5 Ways Impact Travel Helps You Rock Retirement, can be found at http://RockYourRetirement.com/Impact

Contact information for Tammie

Email: info@loveinactiontravel.com * Website: LoveInActionTravel.com * Facebook: http://facebook.com/loveinactiontravel

If you would like to learn more about Habitat for Humanity go to https://www.habitat.org/

Special Thanks to:

    • Angie Strehlow who helps us get great guests that help us with our retirement lifestyle while keeping everything on track…and helps with these show notes!
    • Les Briney, my husband, and Danny Ozment of Emerald City Pro who edits the show and makes my guests and me sound terrific
    • YOU for telling your friends about the show, leaving comments below, and sharing episodes you really like on Facebook, and reviewing the show on iTunes

 

RE:017 Why are Life Stories Important?

Photo of Janella Hodgson who helps tell the life stories of those who are dying.Why are life stories important?

There are things in the world that most folks just don’t think about.

Maybe till it is too late.

Janella Hodgson records the life stories of people as they approach the end of their life. Maybe they are terminally ill, or maybe they are simply aged and worn out.

She is a volunteer for Eastern Palliative Care, which is an organization that provides Palliative and Hospice services.  These include home and nursing care  to recording and transcribing the stories of people who have moved beyond medical help.

People want their story told.  You’ll find out their motivation, their reactions, and why Janella wanted to be a voluntary biographer.

You’ll find answers to the question “Why are life stories important?”.

Interestingly, for the biographer a successful outcome for their work is not necessarily a published biography, nor is that the over-riding purpose of this program. But you are going to have to listen to the interview to sort that out.

Eastern Palliative Care is always looking for more biographers. They provide effective guidelines and comprehensive training to their volunteers to ensure their clients are safe and respected. This is obviously not something that appeals to the masses, but if you are one of those special people with empathy and a few skills, you can find more information by clicking on the link below and working your way to ‘Volunteers’ which you will find under the ‘Supporting EPC’ tag in the menu.

And as an aside, you may be able to contact a hospice or palliative care agency in your area to see if they are looking for volunteers to do this type of work where you live.

What do you think about these types of programs?  Is this something you could do?  Have you told your story yet?  Did your loved one get to tell his life story?  Let us know in the comments below!

Special Thanks to YOU for telling your friends about the show, leaving comments below, and sharing episodes you really like on Facebook, and reviewing the show on iTunes

Amazing way to get seniors involved in Technology: Episode 71

Gary Knight

Gary Knight

Today Gary Knight came on the show and told us about San Diego Futures Foundation (SFFF).  This organization helps seniors and low income individuals get computers at a reduced rate.

SDFF also teaches their recipients how to use the technology, which is often a hurdle in their target populations.

Gary Knight is the Executive Director of the San Diego Futures Foundation (SDFF), a 501(c)3 nonprofit established to improve lives in San Diego through technology. SDFF provides equipment, software, training, services, and technical support to San Diego nonprofits, small businesses, and disadvantaged residents.  SDFF is working to bridge the digital divide in San Diego, and helps low-income households, people with disabilities, and seniors.

Prior to joining the San Diego Futures Foundation, Gary Knight was the president and chief executive officer of the San Diego North Economic Development Council.  The council is a coalition of public and private entities whose main objective is to attract, retain and develop business in North County. It has almost doubled its membership since Knight took over in 2004.  As president, Knight pushed for improved transportation options, greater educational opportunities, and reliable/affordable power supplies.  Gary also provided strong support for the proposed desalination plant in Carlsbad and the new Palomar Hospital in Escondido.

Gary sits on a number of Boards, Committees, and Advisory Groups all across San Diego.

The organization not only helps those over 65 (and on Medicare) or those people of any age who are on Medi-Cal (California’s version of Medicaid) or Cal-Fresh (California’s version of Food Stamps) but it also helps anyone volunteer.  Seniors can get a computer for little to no cost and then learn how to use it.  SDFF gets seniors involved in technology.

This Technology program works by partnering with:

  • Connect to Compete
    • Designed for kids who are on the Free Lunch program
    • Low-Cost Internet
    • Low-Cost Computers
  • Groups of people who want to volunteer by setting up computer labs at schools
  • SDFutures.org which is part of SDFF and provides computers and IT support to non-profits
  • Girls who Code, a school program that encourages girls to go into technology fields

Are the computers FREE?  No, because of some issues in the past, the computers are not free. These high-end computers start at about $100.  Some people do get donated computers depending on the availability, need, and other factors.  These low cost and free computers help get seniors involved in technology.

SDFF re-formats the donated computers according to Department of Defense Standards.  They also send unusable computers to a salvage company that meets their security and disposal requirements.  Additionally, their staff undergoes background checks.  Donors can feel good about donating their computers without having to worry about their data getting into the wrong hands.

Hospital re-admittance rates are about 30% compared to only about 10% when the senior has something to look forward to.  Working on a project or volunteering gives them something to look forward to.

Gary told us a retirement lifestyle story about a man who was in a wheelchair because of a leg amputation due to diabetes.  He rolled up to Gary and exclaimed, “You saved my life!”  That was interesting to Gary since he had never met him.

He explained that he had received one of their computers at a very low point in his life (right after his amputation).  The gentleman had loved to work on cars and attend car shows before he lost his leg but was now confined to a wheelchair.

By using the computer to join chat rooms and view car events online, he felt invigorated again with a newfound purpose in life.  By the time he met Gary, he had started a web site for car buffs where they shared stories that made him feel involved and contributing to something that was important to him.  He was even doing live streaming and moderating a chat room! He’s getting get seniors involved in technology now!

To help protect yourself and your family, I recommend that you download Gary’s Freebie, The Cyber Safety Toolkit, by going to http://rockyourretirement.com/cyber

Get it now because seniors involved in technology need to protect themselves.

You can reach Gary at 619-269-1684 or http://www.SDFutures.org

Special Thanks to:

  • Angie Strehlow who helps us get great guests that help us with our retirement lifestyle while keeping everything on track…and helps with these show notes!
  • Les Briney, my husband, and Danny Ozment of Emerald City Pro who edits the show and makes my guests and me sound terrific
  • Henry Shapiro, host of Retired Excited that airs on Fridays
  • YOU for telling your friends about the show, leaving comments below, and sharing episodes you really like on Facebook, and reviewing the show on iTunes

This post about retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

Volunteer for Meals on Wheels in Retirement: RE009

Rosemary Savage says Volunteer for Meals on Wheels in Retirement

Rosemary Savage says Volunteer for Meals on Wheels in Retirement

Today Henry interviewed Rosemary Savage, a retiree who tells us what its like to volunteer for Meals on Wheels in Retirement:

Henry found out that Rosemary and her husband were a regular couple who raised a large family. They looked forward to traveling and also helping others.  Rosemary’s husband Keith passed away, but they had discussed the fact that he wanted to volunteer.  He found that he wanted to volunteer for Meals on Wheels in Retirement.

  • Meals on Wheels is an international organization which involves delivering meals to elderly or incapacitated people in your own
  • community.  Even though Keith is no longer with her, Rosemary continues “meals on wheels” with the help of her daughters, not because she feels obligated, but because she loves it.
  • You can volunteer around your travel plans.
  • Let your basic humanity shine through.  Henry was impressed by Rosemary’s humble nature and her humanity certainly shined through.
  • By being a volunteer for Meals on Wheels you can help your neighbors and give your own life purpose and meaning.

Because Keith and Rosemary planned for their retirement financial, they were able to travel the world.  They drove with a caravan (RV in the USA) to almost every part of Australia and loved it.  They also made lasting friendships along the road.  If you are interested in caravaning (RVing for US based people), listen to the episode on RVing or Read MORE here.

Get Today’s Freebie, Five Steps to Living in an RV (Caravan) full-time, at http://RockYourRetirement.com/RV

To learn more about Meals on Wheels, find your location below and click on the link.

 Special Thanks to:

• Angie Strehlow who helps us get great guests that help us with our retirement lifestyle while keeping everything on track
• Les Briney who edits the show and makes my guests and me sound terrific
• Lesinda Tubalado who helps keep the website up to date
• Henry Shapiro, host of Retired Excited that airs on Fridays
• YOU the listener for sharing on social media, and telling your friends about it