Montano: AARP Wyoming Volunteers Making A Difference In Wyoming

Posted on 05/23/24

Stella Montano

As we turn the page on our calendars to April, itís not just another monthóitís a time when communities worldwide unite to celebrate and recognize the remarkable contributions made by volunteers. National Volunteer Month serves as a poignant reminder of the selflessness of individuals who invest their time, skills, and energy into bettering the world around them. From the grassroots efforts of local initiatives to the expansive reach of international organizations, volunteers stand as the unsung heroes, shaping societies and driving positive change.

One of the most remarkable facets of volunteerism is its inherent capacity to bridge gaps and cultivate inclusivity. Volunteers hail from diverse backgrounds, yet they seamlessly find common ground, rallying behind shared missions, uplifting those in need, and fostering a more equitable world for all. Here in Wyoming, AARP is incredibly blessed to count on hundreds of volunteers who support caregivers, veterans, and especially those aged 50 and above. With just four staff, an intern, and 75,000 members, AARP Wyoming does not run without volunteers. The same holds for AARP nationally, which boasts a volunteer force exceeding 60,000 individualsóa testament to the power of collective action in nurturing a sense of belonging crucial for building resilient communities.

Recently, volunteers and staff from the West and Central states had the privilege of coming together for a few days. Despite the geographical distances separating us, the unity and collaboration were nothing short of inspiring. In a virtual landscape where Hawaii and Alaska are grouped within the West region, technology serves as our conduit, enabling connection and support among volunteers across the country. At these gatherings, states compare notes, share best practices, and focus intensely on becoming a ìdigital firstî organization.

Convenings like those have inspired AARP Wyoming to offer the most robust calendar of online offerings in the country. From virtual fitness classes to history lectures to colored pencils, writing, and music, weíve got a little bit of everything. Take, for instance, our recent ìBach, Beatles, and Beethoven Lecture Series,î which drew over 5,000 eager participants from across the country and combined brain health, music theory, and fun, the chat box buzzing with lively discussions. The fact that AARP staff, volunteers, and interns from three different states moderated this series without missing a beat underscores the potent synergy between technology and volunteerism in effecting positive change and connection.

By empowering individuals to become catalysts for change within their communities, volunteers sow the seeds for a brighter, more compassionate future. Beyond the tangible impacts they deliver, volunteering offers personal enrichment and growth as individuals acquire new skills, broaden their networks, and deepen their understanding of social issues. Moreover, the unparalleled sense of fulfillment derived from touching someone elseís life propels volunteers towards enhanced well-being and a profound sense of purpose.

As we bask in the spirit of National Volunteer Month, letís pause to extend our heartfelt gratitude to the many volunteers who tirelessly devote their time and talents to serving others. Whether youíre a seasoned volunteer or contemplating embarking on this journey for the first time, remember that every act of kindness, no matter how modest, can affect meaningful change. Letís continue crafting a world characterized by compassion and inclusivityóone volunteer, one act of kindness at a time. As Wyomingís State President for AARP, I extend my deepest appreciation to every remarkable volunteer who plays a pivotal role in enriching the lives of others. As I reflect on one of my favorite quotes, ìTo the world, you may be one person, but to one person, you may be the world,î Iím reminded of the profound impact each volunteer has in shaping our shared humanity.

AARP Wyoming photo

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

Explore the free AARP HomeFit Guide

Upcoming AARP Events

View All AARP Events

Explore the free AARP Now App
image of two AARP membership cards
Only $12 your first year with Automatic Renewal
  • Immediate access to your member benefits
  • Discounts on travel and everyday savings
  • Subscription to AARP The Magazine
  • FREE second membership
Already a member? Renew or Print Card