Jo Ann Jenkins: Love Letter to AARP Volunteers

Posted on 04/19/21

Jo Ann Jenkins – National Volunteer Month 2021

AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins saluted AARP volunteers through National Volunteer Month, saying this year's message "takes on special meaning for me and all of us at AARP" due to the great challenges presented by the pandemic.

"To put it quite simply, we could not have gotten through the year without you," Jenkins said. "During this historically challenging time, you were innovative, resilient and adaptable. Through your compassionate and caring service, you made a real positive difference in communities all across the country.

"Thanks to you, AARP continued to touch 50-plus Americans and their families and to fight effectively for their futures. You joined your staff colleagues to advocate virtually for COVID-19 relief, nursing home safety, financial and health security and more. You sent handwritten cards to veterans and nursing home residents and made friendly calls to those who may be lonely or isolated. You shared critical information on how to find the COVID-19 vaccine in your area, how to stay safe from fraud, and how to find resources for caregivers.

"And you boosted spirits by hosting or leading an ever-growing roster of fun or fulfillment activities, from fitness classes to cooking lessons to movies and trivia nights. Additionally, you supported one another, making thousands of volunteer-to-volunteer calls and emails to make sure your colleagues were OK, helping each other learn new technologies and sharing a kind word or a laugh. And you did all this while working through your own grief, loss and isolation.

"I am truly in awe."

AARP Michigan has more than 270 state-appointed volunteers who played an instrumental role during the past year in reaching out to Michiganders 50 and up with virtual messages about fraud prevention, caregiving, gardening, food and fitness, financial and health security, and more. Hundreds of other volunteers continued to assist people in their communities complete their tax returns through the Tax-Aide program, and to inform Michiganders virtually about Driver Safety.

This story is provided by AARP Michigan. Visit the AARP Michigan page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

More from AARP in Lansing

Upcoming AARP Events

View All AARP Events »

Find information about getting a COVID-19 vaccine in your state. CDC information is available at; additional AARP information and resources are at En español, visite

AARP Member Card

Join or Renew Today


  • Immediate access to your member benefits
  • Discounts on travel and everyday savings
  • Subscription to the award-winning AARP The Magazine
  • An ally on the issues that matter most to you in Lansing
  • Free membership for your spouse or partner