The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) in El Paso is America’s largest volunteer network for people age 55 and over. The Purpose of RSVP is to provide enrichment for older adults through significant community service. It encourages seniors to bring a lifetime of talent, experience, skills, and hobbies, to community projects, organizations, and agencies needing talented volunteers.
Since 1974 when the program commenced, RSVP has grown to almost 1,400 volunteers. The program serves in 75 non-profit organizations and agencies in the City and County of El Paso. RSVP volunteers devote over 200,000 hours of service every year.
RSVP Volunteers can be found at different locations between Canutillo and Fabens. They have varied tasks; from working with community centers, state parks, city zoo, nutrition centers, hospitals, museums, libraries, law enforcement agencies, and to provide friendly phone calls from home.
There is only one requirement to be a RSVP volunteer, and that is to be age 55 or older. All volunteers serve without pay and there is no education or income requirements.
A current feature of the RSVP is the "Calling All Seniors" program. This program is to provide a friendly telephone call service from one senior to another. The Calling All Seniors program also provides referral to agencies for other services that may be needed. For those seniors making the calls, it enables them to remain active through their volunteer work. Their self esteem is increased, as well as their knowledge of community services.
For those receiving the calls, it facilitates them with referral information; it helps them to establish or reestablish communication with others and provides a connection to the community. Those seniors receiving the calls also feel secure knowing that someone will be calling on a regular basis to ensure their well-being. The service is free and can make a big difference in the life of an isolated senior.
The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) celebrated 38 years of service in El Paso on September 22, 2012 at the El Paso Convention and Performing Arts Center. Approximately 800 people attended the event and 200 Volunteers were recognized for 30, 25, 20, 15, 10, and 5 years of service.
Pictures on the right are of the 2011 banquet with Lupe Shamy who currently volunteers at Wellington Chew Senior Center and the RSVP Advisory Council.
If you are 55 years of age and are interested in volunteering, obtaining more information, or an opportunities booklet of volunteer locations, contact us at (915) 541-4374 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org