Topics on Aging

By Juan Gallo

What’s the easiest way to start ministering to seniors?

April 25, 2022

What’s the easiest way to start ministering to seniors?

At Heart2Heart, we truly believe that everyone has a role in ministering to seniors.

I’d love everyone to become a Heart2Heart volunteer. We’d love to educate the whole community on our core values because I think that would serve our seniors well.

However, we also know that everyone’s individual role doesn’t have to exist within the wide array of volunteer opportunities we offer as an organization. In fact, ministering to seniors doesn’t require you to take a giant step outside of your everyday interactions.

What would it look like for you to strike up a conversation with a senior who lives next door to you or within your neighborhood? Some of the questions I offered in last week’s post make great conversation starters for acquaintances or people you’d like to know better.

Ministering to seniors doesn’t require you to take a giant step outside of your everyday interactions. What would it look like for you to strike up a conversation with a senior who lives next door to you or within your neighborhood?

If you’re someone who likes action over small talk, you’d be surprised how much small acts of service can impact a senior. You could offer to rake leaves or help around the house. Tasks like changing light bulbs can be simple for younger bodies but become difficult and even dangerous for older ones.

What if you took your talent and offered it up to a group of seniors via Zoom? Perhaps you have a way with words or an artistic hand and could write a letter or create a card to send to someone. Heart2Heart offers a number of home-based projects that provide a no-contact way to connect to seniors in your community.

Once you get your feet wet, we’d invite you to join other volunteers at a Heart2Heart group event at a care center. Group activities are excellent ways for volunteers to surmount that initial discomfort of ministering with seniors. Being with a group takes some of the perceived pressure off new volunteers and shows them how easy it is to connect.

The biggest thing is to remember we will all get there one day. I’m 40; in 25 more years, I’m considered old enough to retire.

I’ll be honest: I have a fear of where I will be and what I will be doing when I’m older.  I know the last thing I would want is to be in a center, no matter how nice it is, just staring out of a window all day with no one to talk to. That’s not everyone’s experience. But there are so many levels of isolation for different people.

At Heart2Heart, our goal is to educate the community on the need and what they can do to help. One way you can get involved is to sign up to receive text messages for opportunities to serve.

How will you start ministering to seniors?

Read more about:
Juan Gallo
Juan Gallo is the CEO of Heart2Heart Outreach, where he oversees the mobilization of volunteers to provide hope, share love and restore purpose to the lives of the aging population across South Florida.

He also serves as a local pastor and as an adjunct professor at Trinity International University, where he is teaching a course on diversity and aging. Juan has a master’s degree in counseling and psychology and is a licensed mental health counselor intern.

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