In 2015, baby boomers numbered around 74.9 million in the U.S. Known as the Generous Generation, they will donate around $47 billion or more annually; making up 43% of the donations given yearly. Though in size, the Baby Boomers have recently been edged out by Millennials, they are a force to be reckoned with in terms of buying power and philanthropy. It is apparent that Baby Boomers are ready to part with some of their hard-earned money for a good cause, but how can seniors get involved further and make more than just a monetary difference in their golden years? We’ve rounded up several volunteer opportunities in the Pittsburgh area for the 65+ crowd.
Do you like crafts? Call yourself a “happy hooker?” Check out Project Linus! This group is active year round and works to create blankets and other items, “…to provide love, a sense of security, warmth, and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need.” “Blanketeers” can get involved in local chapters across the country. You can donate projects as an individual or join in with an established group. If you are crafty with a needle, check out the what the Pittsburgh chapter is up to.
There are multiple food banks that help needy families in the area who are always in need of volunteers of all ages. This could be a great opportunity to volunteer with friends or get to know new people while helping your community. Think about working with the Cloverleaf Community Food Pantry or the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank to distribute food. Organizations like this are always welcoming volunteers and it takes little-to-no training to get involved.
Library Reading Buddies
Enjoy books and reading? Help young children learn to love reading through Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s mentor program. Volunteer and provide help with homework, reading, playing games, and fostering caring and supportive relationships with the next generation.
Have a background in healthcare? Think about utilizing your skills and volunteer at your local hospital. You may no longer be able to work the long hours that sometimes come with a career in healthcare or lift patients, but you can still help care for those in need. There are many ways to volunteer such as being a gift shop attendant, patient escort, or man the welcome desk. St. Clair Hospital and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh have many ways to get involved.
You are never too old to make a difference. Baby Boomers may be into their senior years but can still continue to make an impact. Are you a senior who volunteers? We’d love to hear how you are active in your community! Do you need volunteers? Let us know how to help!