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RSVP – Getting Things Done
- If you are 55 and older, retired or not, with some time to share and a desire to make a difference,
- We’ll match your skills, interests and talents with community needs right here in Frederick County.
- You’ll choose how, when, and where you want to serve.
What is RSVP?
RSVP, The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program is one of the largest volunteer efforts in the nation. RSVP engages older adults in a diverse range of volunteer activities that address critical community needs. They serve in numerous nonprofit organizations, public agencies, and faith based groups.
Join RSVP and you’ll join over 300,000 volunteers across the country who are tackling tough issues in their communities.
History of RSVP
The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) is an outgrowth of efforts by private groups, gerontologists and government agencies, over the past four decades, to address the needs of older adults in America.
The White House Conference on Aging in 1961 called attention to the needs of older people for useful activity. One of the outcomes of the conference was the passage of the Older Americans Act of 1965.
In the same year, the Community Service Society of New York launched a pilot project on Staten Island which involved a small group of older adults in volunteer service to their communities. It was called SERVE (Serve and Enrich Retirement by Volunteer Experience). The success of this program, which demonstrated beyond a doubt the value of the services of older volunteers, lead to an amendment to the Older Americans Act, creating the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program in 1969.
RSVP was launched in 1971 under the auspices of the Administration on Aging (AOA). In July of that year, RSVP was transferred from AOA to ACTION, the federal domestic volunteer agency. Eleven projects were started that summer.
The period of greatest growth for RSVP occurred during the years 1972 through 1974. By June 1974 there were 666 projects nationwide operating on a federal appropriation of $15,000,000. By 1988, there were 760 projects supported by federal funding of $30,000,000. In a recent program year, more than 232,000 RSVP volunteers delivered more than 40.4 million hours of service in their communities. Through community and faith-based organizations, RSVP volunteers served more than 329,400 veterans, mentored more than 78,000 children, and provided independent living services to nearly 797,000 elderly adults.
In 1993, the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) was established to connect Americans of all ages and backgrounds with opportunities to give back to their communities and their nation. It merged the work and staffs of two predecessor agencies, ACTION and the Commission on National and Community Service.
At its inception, CNCS was directed to manage three main programs:
- The newly created Senior Corps, which incorporated the longstanding Foster Grandparents, RSVP (Retired and Senior Volunteer Program), and Senior Companions programs;
- The newly created AmeriCorps, which incorporated the longstanding VISTA, the new National Civilian Community Corps programs, and the full-time demonstration program that had been established under the 1990 Act; and
- Learn and Serve America, formerly known as Serve America.
Today CNCS serves more than 5 million individuals of all ages and backgrounds help meet local needs through a wide array of service opportunities. These include projects in six priority areas: disaster services, economic opportunity, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures, and veterans and military families through CNCS’s core programs: AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, and the Social Innovation Fund.
CNCS is part of our nation’s history of commitment to building a culture of citizenship, service, and responsibility.
As an RSVP volunteer you’ll receive:
- The personal satisfaction of knowing you are helping others
- Personalized volunteer placement
- The opportunity to use your experience and skills
- The challenge of interesting assignments
- The pleasure of meeting new people and making new friends
- Supplemental accident and liability insurance
- Recognition of your efforts
Your Neighbors Benefit!
Among their many assignments, RSVP volunteers:
- Distribute food to families in need
- Deliver meals to homebound individuals
- Provide transportation to veterans and the homebound elderly
- Provide health education and outreach programs
- Provide interpretation services and citizenship classes
- Help individuals find appropriate housing, file for tax credits and locate resources for home repairs
- Assist agencies with volunteer program development
- Work with the Commission on Aging to help communities develop “villages” and the support networks to make them successful
RSVP Means Results!
Your time is valuable and we maximize every minute. We’ll prepare you for success with pre-service orientation and training from the organization where you will serve.
We’ll keep in touch to assure that the placement is a good “fit” for you.
When you volunteer, you are not just helping others, you are helping yourself. Volunteering leads to new experiences, new discoveries and new friends. And studies show that volunteer engagement helps you live longer and gives you a positive outlook on life.
Learn more about how RSVP is making an impact:
How Can You Learn More?
Start making a difference in your community today! Contact the RSVP office at 301-600-7900 or email@example.com to learn more about what opportunities RSVP has to offer you!
Sign up for the RSVP of Frederick County mailing list to keep up with events, volunteer opportunities and other important information!
RSVP is part of the Corporation for National and Community Service and is sponsored by the Asian American Center of Frederick.