Meeting the Need

Elizabeth Vaughan

At Neighbors Who Care (NWC), we receive thoughtful thank you notes often. Some are on monogrammed stationery, while others are scrawled on a piece of paper, but they all offer heartfelt gratitude for the work our volunteers do in our community. Our staff looks forward to mail time, and we love to read your letters. They remind us why we are here and keep us focused on providing the best experience for our clients and our volunteers. It’s so nice to feel appreciated!

NWC is constantly recruiting new volunteers, the lifeblood of our organization. Without replenishing our volunteer base, we’d quickly be unable to serve our homebound neighbors. Currently, nearly 700 people count on our volunteer services to continue living independently. Many simply can no longer drive but still manage quite well at home. We’re there when they need a ride to their medical appointments. Some are recovering from surgery or serious illness and need someone to check on them as they heal. Still others cannot cook for themselves, and our volunteer delivery of evening meals is critical to their continued well-being. Shopping for groceries is a godsend for clients who cannot shop for themselves. However, we are concerned about a steep decline in available volunteers.

Soon, NWC may not be able to provide some clients rides to their vital doctors’ appointments. Roughly 50% of our volunteers are not currently providing service due to restrictions from their own doctors and continued concerns about COVID-19. The volunteers who are currently providing rides, delivering meals or groceries, and checking in on vulnerable neighbors are being asked to carry twice the load as before, and we need help.

The process of becoming a volunteer with NWC is easy and takes about one week to complete. It all starts when you register on our website at You’ll receive a link to download an application and handbook (you can also pick up a materials packet at our office) followed by an invitation to the next orientation class.

After orientation, you’ll follow the provided instructions for your background check and then submit your completed application to NWC along with a photo of your smiling face. The final step is to have a brief placement interview with our administrative director where you are matched with appropriate clients (depending on the service you choose) and given your ID badge.

That’s all there is to it! NWC makes it as easy as possible to get started, and we are truly the most flexible volunteer-driven service organization there is. There are no minimum hourly requirements or rigid schedules. You choose how much or how little time you give, and you can decline any service request that conflicts with your personal calendar.

If you can help, please register at Let’s make sure nobody has to miss an important doctor’s appointment this summer.