Organization: Independence at Home
What role does your nominee have in senior care and senior care issues?
Helen Lynn is a volunteer at multiple senior serving organizations. She demonstrates a compassionate dedication to improving the lives of seniors in our community.
Why should this person be nominated
It takes a unique and dedicated person to wear as many different volunteer hats as Helen Lynn. A senior herself, Helen has spent many years as a volunteer, helping seniors since 2008.
It is my privilege to work with Helen through Volunteer Action for Aging by Independence at Home, a community service of SCAN Health Plan. Our mission is to help ensure that seniors continue to live safely, independently, and engaged in their communities. Working alongside all our dedicated volunteers, Helen brings our mission to life. In 2013, as we expanded our programs into Orange County, Helen was our first volunteer. She never hesitated to assist as we distributed Essentials of Independence Kits to seniors in need in Anaheim or hand knit blankets to appreciative seniors in Fullerton.
When Volunteer Action for Aging formed the GiveBackers in early 2014, Helen brought her spirit of volunteerism to that group as one of our original GiveBackers (seniors 55+ who give back to the community whenever they can). Helen has given back multiple times by helping to serve lunches provided by Community SeniorServ to over 400 seniors at Senior Centers in Orange, Anaheim, Yorba Linda, and Cypress. For this volunteer experience, the “hat” Helen dons is actually a hair net! During one of our recent GiveBacks over Memorial Day Weekend, one of the seniors commented, “You volunteers really make our day by being here.” On her own initiative, Helen piggybacked on her GiveBack experience at the Yorba Linda Community Center and continues to help serve in their noon meal program. Along with their lunch, seniors are sure to receive a friendly hello and a laugh with Helen.
Helen’s give back spirit doesn’t stop at Senior Centers though. She has volunteered as a GiveBacker at Second Harvest’s Incredible Edible Farm in Irvine. Here Helen has pulled upon her childhood farm experiences to harvest food for those who are hungry in our communities. Other volunteer experiences include helping to bring Music for the Soul and Ice Cream Social events to seniors. At some of these events, Helen has honed her skills at calling the numbers for Bingo!
The past two Thanksgiving mornings have found Helen volunteering at our Thanksgiving Meal Delivery sites. Helen and our team of volunteers helped bag and deliver meals for hundreds of seniors who might otherwise have gone without a warm meal and a visit on Thanksgiving Day.
And if this isn’t enough, Helen has volunteered with the SmileMakers at the Council on Aging Orange County for years. As a SmileMaker, Helen volunteers hundreds of hours to help ensure that isolated and lonely seniors in long term care facilities each receive a gift at the holidays. For the past five years, Helen has served as President of this worthwhile group. Helen also takes on a different hat at the Council, as she volunteers year round to help with Answers, the informative Council on Aging Resource Guide.
When asked what inspires her to give so much, Helen had this to say: “I volunteer today because of my Mother who lived for some time in a care facility. Although I was there for my Mom, I was exposed to so many seniors who didn’t have any family. It just feels good to be able to put smiles on people’s faces.”
On behalf of seniors everywhere, “Hats off to Helen!” whose volunteer spirit has touched the lives of thousands of seniors throughout the Orange County community.