Volunteer with us because…
  • A disabled senior wants to make a friend
  • Someone turning 65 needs help navigating the complexities of Medicare
  • An older, disabled adult relies on Meals on Wheels
  • An isolated individual would be delighted with a birthday card
  • Community lunches mean some seniors won’t go hungry

The Council on Aging is always looking for volunteers! If you would like to volunteer for us, you will be joining a community of more than 450 people who contribute more than 20,000 hours each year to support our programs and services. We want your volunteer time to be both personally rewarding and convenient for your schedule. We will find a great fit for you.

Here are some of our volunteer opportunities:

What is an administrative/Office support volunteer? The Office/ Admin volunteer will work with staff to support administrative tasks vital to our organization.

What will I be doing when I volunteer? As an office & admin support volunteer you may be doing a number of different tasks, including the following: assists with data entry, prep materials for Nutrition Education classes, coordinate and deliver donation items to meal sites and clients in need, delivery of our Directions resource guide, or assisting with client, volunteer and donor mailings. This work does not require a specific day or time so you can work out a schedule with the project supervisor that works for you.

What is the advisory council? The Advisory Council is made up of representatives from Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson Counties. Representatives are primarily 60 years of age or older, but age is not a specific requirement for the role. Advisory Council members may serve up to two 3-year terms.

What will I be doing when I volunteer? Council members facilitate the exchange of information among staff, Board of Directors, community groups, and our clients. They help the Council on Aging to assess the needs of older adults and the disabled in their communities, actively participate with public relations functions, and stay current on current legislative activities regarding the agency’s programs. The Advisory Council meets bi-monthly.

What is a Committee Member?

The Council on Aging Board of Directors includes three standing committees — Finance, Development and Programming. Each committee will be chaired by a CoA board member and may include up to three community members. Committee members provide insight, support, and recommendations to the staff and board. All final decisions will remain the responsibility of the full CoA board. We welcome applications from individuals with relevant experience for consideration by the committee chair.

What Will I Be Doing When I Volunteer?

Board committees generally meet monthly, usually in the first week of the month. Committee members use their expertise to interact with staff to monitor the organization’s progress in their assigned area and make recommendations for improvements. The committees help prepare a report each month for the Council on Aging Board of Directors. While this is a non-voting role, it is an essential part of the CoA governance structure.

What is Community Dining? These are in-person dining experiences for our seniors.

BEND: In-Person dining in Bend occurs at the Senior Services Center every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

SISTERS: We are serving an in-person lunch on Tuesdays, at the Sisters Community Church, 1300 McKenzie Hwy, Sisters.

What will I be doing when I volunteer?

Community Dining volunteers help set-up tables, check-in guests, serve lunches, talk to our clients as they dine and help with clean-up. It is a fun way to get to know a new people in the community.

What is the Volunteer Event Coordinator?
The volunteer event coordinator organizes local talent for community lunches at our Bend and Sisters meal site locations.

What will I be doing when I volunteer?
The volunteer event coordinator will work with local organizations to book guest speakers, performers, music or entertainment appropriate for seniors. The volunteer event coordinator will work closely with the Bend and Sisters meal site coordinators to maintain the schedule of events at each location. This is a great way to volunteer from home and use your event management skills!

What are Grab-N-Go Lunches? Grab-N-Go lunch meals are available for pick up between 12:30 and 1:00 on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at the Sisters Community Church, 1300 McKenzie Hwy, Sisters.

What will I be doing when I volunteer? As a volunteer you can help in a number of ways with our Grab-N-Go meal service. You can help with packing up the Grab-N-Go lunches, check clients in, help direct traffic and/or talk to our clients as the wait in their cars. They love to talk, hopefully you do too!

What is Meals on Wheels? Meals on Wheels is a nationwide network of community-based, non-profit programs dedicated to providing older adults who are 60 years old or older and either home-bound or have difficulty shopping/cooking a nutritious meal, a friendly visit and a quick safety check.

What will I be doing when I volunteer? The volunteer job is delivering meals and friendly greetings to home-bound older adults. Most typically, this involves picking up meals at a central location and delivering them along a predetermined route directly to the homes of several older adults in the area. Deliveries are done during the weekdays. Once you are done, you return the delivery packaging items, report to the site coordinator and get back on your way.

What is Medicare Counseling? The Council on Aging provides free, unbiased Medicare counseling to Medicare-eligible older adults. The Council on Aging is the sponsoring agency in Central Oregon for the Oregon Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance program also known as SHIBA. SHIBA is a program of the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. The purpose of the SHIBA program is to protect the insurance buying public through one-on-one counseling, consumer education and referral services.

What training does a Medicare counsel have to complete to be a volunteer? A Medicare counselor will need to complete a screening process, volunteer training, and a required internship with seasoned counselors under the supervision of the SHIBA Coordinator at the Council on Aging. Prospective counselors are caring, have good interpersonal, oral, and written skills, have computer proficiency, are organized, have reliable transportation and no conflict of interest. Counselors have an annual training requirement to stay current with the annual changes to Medicare benefits.

What will I be doing when I volunteer? Once certified, Medicare counselors agree to a minimum of service hours per week to provide confidential and objective health insurance counseling to people with Medicare in person and by phone according to SHIBA guidelines. Counselors primarily assist beneficiaries in the area in which they live. Medicare counselors assess clients’ resources and needs related to health care and health insurance, refer clients to appropriate resources as needed, and enter reporting for each contact into a statewide database.

What is nutrition services? We make many of the meals we distribute to the community via Meals on Wheels and our Grab-N-Go take out lunches. We need prep cooks and salad makers.

What will I be doing when I volunteer? You will be working with our chef to prepare meals, make desserts or salads that are provided to our clients. Shifts are usually from 8:00 am to 10:30 am. Some shifts are also offered in the afternoons.

What is Caring Connections? Caring Connections volunteers provide regular phone calls and/or in-person visits that serve as friendly check-ins and opportunities fora senior to socialize. These phone calls and visits are a chance to brighten someone’s day and make a new connection in your community.

What does volunteering for Caring Connections entail?

  • Must be 18 and over with a valid email address.
  • Call or visit assigned match at least once a week.
  • Commit to 6 months of phone calls or visits.
  • Attend trainings.
  • Pass a background check.

We are committed to serving our Spanish-speaking seniors in Central Oregon. If you are interested in volunteering and are bilingual in English and Spanish, please call us at (541) 678-5483.

What is Pet Pals?

Pet Pals provides seniors with pet food, supplies, and veterinary care to ensure that their animal companions are happy and healthy.

What will I be doing as a volunteer?

Volunteers are needed to deliver pet food and supplies to clients on the 3rd Saturday of each month in the morning. There are also positions available to drive pets, and sometimes their owners, to and from the vet. If you’re passionate about pets, this could be the role for you.

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