Another Kind Of Second Act

Retirement is an appealing prospect for most working people. The idea of pulling back from the pressures of employment, the allure of leisure time and the chance to receive back from life-long investments in Social Security and a retirement account provide real anticipation.

Granted that these years aren’t always “golden” for some, they still present possibilities not feasible in our younger years. There are beloved leisure sports like golf or sailing. Or the chance finally to renovate a classic car. From simple pleasures like increased time with grandchildren to ambitions like travel to lands never visited, the bucket list of prospects is full of possibilities.

Seniors Volunteer with Second Act at Vernon Homes

These prospects have one thing in common: making the most of the years remaining to us. But for some, there’s a different way to define “making the most” – one whose focus is a bit more radical, but whose gratification is no less real. For an increasing number of retirees, spending their later years in the service of others is providing more meaning than the traditional pursuit of leisurely pastimes.

For example, RSVP is a national organization of senior volunteers who participate in environmental projects, mentor and tutor children, and respond to natural disasters. Next matches, then places, the talents and passions of retirees with overseas mission opportunities. Foster Grandparents is a program dedicated to helping children’s organizations by shepherding youth with disadvantages or special needs.

Seniors Who Volunteer To Aid Children

There are other stories of seniors who ventured out on their own to make a difference. For example, retired executive Gloria Dickerson started the We Together Create Change organization, fighting the effects of poverty on children in Mississippi. She was later awarded a fellowship with Purpose Prize, exemplifying those who in retirement have followed a calling to aid others and serve a community.

Whether done privately or as part of a larger body, these are just a few examples of people dedicated to the idea that the best way to spend the retirement years is by giving one’s self away. They are evidence that while the traditional approach to retirement is certainly sensible, there’s more than one way to “finish well.”

What They Say

“ You are all very compassionate and caring. We appreciate all that you did. ”

- Ruth Tripp and family

What They Say

“ The patient and loving way that everyone has is contagious. Thank you all. ”

- The Bologan Family

What They Say

“ As many of you know, my mom is not one to sugarcoat anything… in fact, she can be the first to complain… my mom regularly says that she is so grateful to be cared for by such a loving group of people. ”

- Lynna Jackson, daughter of Clara Stone

What They Say

“ I appreciate so much your arranging things for me so that I could get therapy at Vernon Green. My needs were attended to very professionally by your staff. I thank the Lord for your kind and compassionate heart as you faithfully lead the work of Vernon Home. ”

- Bill

What They Say

“ Words cannot say how much we appreciate your loving care for Mom, Grandma, Grammie. You all truly became her extended family. You brought out a social and spunky side of her that would have been missed by so many if we had tried to care for her at home. ”

- Mike & Jeanne Mears