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United Way Blog

Volunteering for Healthy, Active and Independent Living

United Way brings people together to make great things happen. Around the world, United Way connects people to resources that empower children succeed in school and that help individuals and families’ improve financial stability and achieve and maintain good health. This includes creating partnerships that inspire and promote volunteer initiatives that are essential to building healthy communities, where people actively care for and support each other.

Take United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, for example. Pennsylvania has the fourth highest senior population (65+) by percentage in the U.S., and 89 percent of older adults in the state would prefer to remain in their homes as long as possible. In response, United Way has launched Aging at Home – A Community Network,, a three-year pilot program designed to help older adults connect with resources that support their ability to age well at home, such as easy access to health screenings, chore assistance, and transportation.

Day in and day out, local organizations like Visiting Nurse Association Community Services, Inc., Senior Community Services, and Congreso de Latinos Unidos help seniors improve the quality of their life. Volunteers are essential to extending social services and make a difference in the lives of seniors as well.

Volunteering can improve health at any age but is an especially important part of staying healthy as we grow older. And so, in celebration of Older Americans Month, United Way and Kimberly-Clark volunteers – some of them seniors -- sorted, packed and distributed 300 Senior Care Packages to isolated older adults in need. The care packages included a jelly bath mat, night light, playing cards, dental care value pack, body scrubber, hand sanitizer, Band Aids, flashlight, lip calm, nail clippers, brush/comb, towels, wipes, notecards, and a carbon monoxide alarm all in a reusable, branded tote bag.

The Kimberly-Clark’s Depend brand supported the project, one of 10 events in the U.S. and Canada in the past few months that underscore how volunteering is part of healthy, active and independent living throughout an individual’s life.

United Way believes everyone has the right to age in good health with dignity in their home and community. Some seniors have simple needs, but if they live in isolation it means they may not get the help they deserve. Contact your local United Way to learn how you can volunteer to help build and sustain a healthy community.