Clackamas County celebrates and honors local volunteers

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Clackamas County is celebrating National Volunteer Week this year from April 21-27 to honor all the individuals across the county who give their time and effort to help others in need.

Clackamas County is extremely fortunate to have a strong and dedicated community of local volunteers who are always willing to lend a helping hand. Volunteers are the backbone of our community, and their contributions have a profound impact on the lives of those around them. They selflessly give their time, skills, and compassion to make a difference in the world. Without them, many essential services would not be possible, and many individuals would struggle to access necessary resources.

“As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, we want to extend a heartfelt thank you to each and every volunteer in Clackamas County for their unwavering dedication to serving others and the positive difference they make in our community,” said Clackamas County Human Services Supervisor Kristina Babcock. “Volunteering locally is incredibly rewarding – for the volunteer, for organizations and for so many others."

Social Services is one of the many organizations that benefits from the generosity and commitment of these volunteers. During National Volunteer Week, the county wants to take a moment to express our gratitude and appreciation for these amazing individuals and shed light on the importance of the services they provide.

The Social Services Transportation Programs, including Transportation Reaching People and the Senior Companion Programs, play a vital role in the lives of some of our most vulnerable residents. These programs focus on providing companionship and transportation services to individuals who have limited or no access to transportation. The volunteers involved in these programs provide much needed support by assisting with grocery shopping, personal errands, and transportation to medical appointments, including life-saving treatments such as chemotherapy and dialysis. For many of the riders, these services are their only option and without them, they would struggle to access basic necessities and receive necessary medical care.

In the past year, 51 dedicated volunteers gave their time on a regular basis to ensure county residents had access to essential transportation services. These volunteers served a total of 463 residents and provided 8,251 rides in total, covering all areas of the county. Their impact goes beyond just the number of rides provided, as their commitment resulted in a total of 15,097 hours of volunteer service. This is an incredible achievement that made a significant difference in the lives of many community members.

Another program relying heavily on the help of volunteers is the Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance (SHIBA) program. Medicare is a vital program that provides health insurance for millions of senior citizens and people with disabilities in the United States. However, navigating the complexities of Medicare can be a daunting task for many individuals. Thanks to the expertise of 22 SHIBA volunteers, 977 county residents received 1,042 hours of one-on-one counseling sessions to help them understand Medicare and make informed decisions about their healthcare coverage. At the same time, SHIBA volunteers also actively participated in 34 community outreach events to spread the word about the SHIBA program and help an additional 837 individuals understand their Medicare options.

Learn more about senior services and volunteer opportunities in Clackamas County.