Senior Citizen's Guide digital books
Senior Citizen's Guide to Washington County (PA)

Faith in Action assists all income levels in Washington County

Senior citizens and individuals with disabilities throughout Washington County would like to remain independent in their own homes or apartments. But sometimes a little assistance from a friend is needed.

Do you have time available during the week when you could help someone for a few hours by going grocery shopping, accompanying people to their appointments, giving a break to a full-time caregiver of a spouse or relative, or calling to check-in on someone who lives alone? Could you be that person who makes the quality of someone’s life better?

Faith in Action needs you to volunteer.

Volunteers are needed in Washington County to assist in many “job areas” as described above. Similar volunteer programs exist in most areas, but TRPIL’s Washington County Faith in Action program has served Washington County for nearly 20 years.

Most volunteers average 2 to 4 hours every month, based on their availability and type of help that is needed. Some do more, and some do less. Two great aspects of volunteering are that a) you can choose the schedule that works for your time, and b) what type of work you like to do.

According to Faith in Action Program Director Sandy Sabot, “The most requested service we seem to have from our care receivers is transportation. Freedom Transit is helpful for most situations in Washington County, and we encourage people to try that first. Although many will use the Freedom Transit services, there are situations where the one-to-one, volunteer-to-care receiver option is the best option. We do what we can to match volunteers for those who need rides, but sometimes it just doesn’t work out. Many people call-in thinking they can request a driver right away. However, there is a process we have to go through beforehand.”

The process to be involved with Faith in Action as a care-receiver includes having staff do an in-person intake with the potential care-receiver to discuss how the program can work. If you are a senior citizen or individual with a disability and need some assistance to remain independent, then Faith in Action is available to you in Washington County.

There are no income requirements for the program’s services, and that is a unique aspect of Faith in Action. And there are no fees charged to any care receiver. Faith in Action is a volunteer program and anyone can access the service. And, if someone would like to pay for the service, he or she is encouraged to donate to Faith in Action so it continues as a viable program to assist all those who need its services in the county.

On the other side, the volunteer care-givers are trained and screened as well, so a good match can be made to fit both individuals’ schedules and needs. In addition to an application, volunteers complete a criminal background check: this is done by our office and costs you nothing. Prior to placement, volunteers receive an orientation about what is expected of them and what they can expect in various volunteer situations.

Faith in Action volunteers often come from a network of churches that are supporters of the program. Sabot said that “About 28 churches are in our network and we’re looking to try to increase that. However, we also have many volunteers who are not part of our church network, but possibly belong to another church that hasn’t joined our network yet. Some volunteers are also not affiliated with any church, but have a desire to volunteer to help others. All are welcome to get involved and put their faith into action.”

Anyone wishing to volunteer as a care-giver, or any individual with a disability who is 18 (or older) and all seniors (60 or older) who needs help and wishes to be listed as a care-receiver, can contact the Faith in Action office at 724-223-5115, ext. 1203.

Callers should leave a message if the call is not answered immediately. The office is staffed by only two part-time people, but calls will be returned and e-mails answered.

TRPIL provides office space, administrative oversight, supplies, phone and internet, and office equipment for Faith in Action. Other program costs are covered by fundraisers and donations to Faith in Action from churches, organizations, and individuals. Faith in Action also has a steering committee to help oversee the programs’ goals and events. Volunteers wishing to serve in that capacity should send their resume to the office for consideration.

Call TRPIL today and ask for Faith in Action.


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