The program is designed to prevent and alleviates the physical and mental health challenges of isolated, older adults and individuals with disabilities who lack an adequate support system.

The Friendly Visitor Program is a volunteer-based program that matches volunteers with homebound seniors who are seeking additional companionship. Benzie Senior Resources will provide training to visiting volunteers who are qualified, caring individuals that will have the proper tools needed to meet the needs of seniors.

Visiting volunteers will spend at least 1-2 hour a week visiting in the senior’s home, sharing thoughts, feelings, talking about family, friends, discussing current events or other topics of interest.

Friendly Visitor Volunteers will receive orientation and training on Benzie Senior Resources’ policies and procedures on ethics, confidentiality agreements, volunteer expectations, conducts and training specifically geared toward working with the senior population.

Friendly Visitor volunteers will visit the senior at the senior’s place of residence. The visits will be social in nature. Some suggested activities may include playing cards, look at photographs, help write a letter, read a story, reminisce, be a friendly ear, grocery shopping, medical appointments, out for  lunch or just talk. The times of the visit are flexible. The volunteer and senior will set up a mutually convenient time that works for the both of them.

The Friendly Visitors Program provides friendly visits to Benzie County residents 60 years of age and older. Other criteria include:

  • report feeling lonely/isolated and lack regular visitors
  • have an interest in visiting one-on-one and sharing life experiences
  • live alone and receive few regular visits
  • are not diagnosed with moderate or advanced Alzheimer’s or other dementia

Objectives:

•    Provide clients with meaningful, one-on-one relationships with adult volunteers
•    Assist clients to become knowledgeable of and have access to needed  resources
•    Improve clients day to day lives
•    Help clients maintain self-sufficiency and independence
•    Expose clients to a variety of community activities

Our goal at Benzie Senior Resources for the Friendly Visitor Program is to have an enriching experience for the volunteer as well as for the senior. We foresee many friendships evolving from participating in our program.