For these three, age no obstacle to volunteering
Through simple acts such as mending clothes and playing the piano, three area volunteers brightened the lives of seniors over the past 30 years. High Country RSVP, a network organization that suggests volunteer opportunities for people age 55 and older, recognized Esther Kinnier of Glenwood, Cleo Schultz of Silt, and Sylvia Miles of Rifle for their 30 years of service as volunteers.
“Two of the women started the RSVP program,” said Kate Somsel-Longmore, program director for the Glenwood Springs nonprofit.”They’ve got quite a history here.”The three women were acknowledged with an honorary plaque at the RSVP’s annual recognition dinner last month. Of the three, Miles attended the event.
Kinnier, 92, one of the founders of RSVP, recalls bringing sewing machines into a room of the Hotel Colorado to mend clothes for area nursing homes. A van would pick up volunteers from New Castle to Carbondale, Kinnier said, and take them back to Glenwood to work on the sewing project. In 1985, Kinnier also helped sew a signature quilt as a volunteer for AARP, garnering 365 autographs, including those of the governor and other senior members of the community. “We tried to get President Reagan but they sent it back with a regret,” she said. Proceeds from the auction of the quilt went to the RSVP program. “I feel like I did a little something for the community,” she said.
Music filled Rifle nursing homes during Sylvia Miles’ Friday afternoon visits as a volunteer. A music teacher in Rifle in the 1940s, Miles would play her harmonica and piano for seniors at the E. Dene Moore Care Center and the Rifle Veterans Home.”I was surprised when I found out (about the recognition),” said Miles, 94. “I hadn’t counted the time – I’d done volunteering, entertaining people, for many years.” Cleo Schultz, 83, of Silt was on the first Garfield County Council on Aging in the 1970s, and also helped to develop the RSVP program. As a volunteer, she participated in a variety of programs, from donating her time to the bicycle rodeo to visiting sick friends. More recently, Schultz cut more than 100 yards of yellow ribbon, and with the aid of local children, tied many ribbons on trees, bushes and other structures as part of the Yellow Ribbons All the Way Home event last Monday.
“My philosophy is whatever good you can do, you must do it today, for you pass this way but once,” she said.Contact Christine Dell’Amore: 945-8515, ext. email@example.com
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