Community action program helps seniors stay independent - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Community action program helps seniors stay independent

Community groups urge volunteers to find and help new friends stay active. (Source: WAFF) Community groups urge volunteers to find and help new friends stay active. (Source: WAFF)
(WAFF) -

Catherine Faulkner says Senior Companion Linda Stroud has really been a blessing for her. 

"She takes me to the grocery store, to the doctor... you know, just anywhere I need to go," Faulkner said.

And Linda adds that pairing her volunteering with Catherine's needs resulted in a grand friendship. 

"We have a wonderful relationship," Linda said. "Whatever her needs are that day... Sometimes she just wants to sit and talk."

The Senior Companion Program is offered through your local Community Action group, and it's just a phone call away.

Coordinator Carrie Waynick said they have specific goals when making these partnerships. 

"It's really twofold," Waynick explained. "To keep seniors active and helping others, and to help the ones that need some help."

These partnerships must meet strict guidelines. Volunteers age 55 and older are matched with clients who have similar personalities. 

Volunteers are paid a small stipend and transportation, which does not count against their Social Security. 

Waynick says they try to make a great match every time. 

"We try to know the senior companions' likes and dislikes, and even physical things such as allergies. We have some that are maybe not allergic to cats, but scared of cats, so we would not put them in a place where there were cats," she said.

Catherine says this pairing has worked for these two ladies. Linda has been with her for about a year. 

"She is an excellent worker, a really good, caring companion and I just feel like she's my sister now," Catherine laughed.

Sisters in well being and living life to the fullest. For more information, contact your local Community Action center.

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