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When it comes to giving back
to local vets, opportunities are
abundant and volunteers are
needed across the board.
A great place to start looking for ways to help is the
Salem VA Medical Center which has many different
volunteer options to choose from. Transportation
for vets is an ongoing issue in our region, so joining
an organization like Disabled American Veterans
and volunteering to drive former service members
to appointments would assist in fulfilling this evergrowing
need. There are also chances to volunteer
with programs that focus on providing veterans with
therapeutic recreation opportunities, such as Healing
Hands and Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing. Simply
donating your time to staffing a local veterans-related
event, such as the Roanoke Valley Veterans Council's
Memorial Day Ceremony, can also make a meaningful
Now that you're retired, you're
ready to spend more time serving
the community - great! Asking
yourself these questions will help
you determine the activity that's
right for you.
* What am I interested in/passionate about?
* What skills do I have and what skills do I
hope to learn?
* How much time do I have to devote to
giving back?
* What limitations do I have?
* Are there any expenses associated with
this role, and, if so, am I able to afford
30 / RETIRE-VA 2024
When patients feel unwell, a kind gesture and warm
smile can really lift their spirits. Carilion Clinic has
a wealth of possibilities to choose from, including
directing patients, serving as host in various waiting
areas and the chance to make Roanoke Memorial
Hospital's Ronald McDonald Family Room, designated
for the families of hospitalized children, and those in it
feel as peaceful as possible.
Advanced illness and hospice organizations like
Good Samaritan and ProMedica are always looking
for people willing to provide their patients with extra
support. Volunteers are welcome to help those in
their care by running errands, staying with patients
so their familial caretakers can rest or by just being a
comforting touch and friendly face.
If you're passionate about all things critters, helping
animals who could use some extra love might be the
perfect way to give back. The Roanoke Wildlife Rescue
and the Southwest Virginia Wildlife Center of Roanoke
give volunteers the unique opportunity to help in the
rehabilitation process of species native to our region.
The Roanoke Valley Horse Rescue relies on the
generous contributions of the community to continue
their operations. They have a human companions
program where each person is assigned a horse or
two that they groom, walk and spend quality time
with. Animal shelters and welfare organizations like
the Roanoke Valley SPCA and Angels of Assisi are also
appreciative of animal-loving volunteers.
Saint Francis Service Dogs is a fantastic option
for those who hope to make a difference in not only
the lives of dogs but also their future owners. Erin
Morris, Marketing and Public Relations Manager, says

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