We had the opportunity to sit down recently with AARP Massachusetts longtime volunteer Dennis Hohengasser. If he looks familiar to you, it's probably because you have seen one of his Fraud Watch Network presentations around the state. Hohengasser has been volunteering for AARP for four years and is an expert on fraud and scams. He travels across the Commonwealth and gives 15 to 20 presentations per year on fraudulent activity and how to avoid being scammed.
When asked why he likes to give of his time to help others, he said, "Volunteering keeps me engaged with the community. It has been eye opening to see the range and variety of activities and initiatives that AARP undertakes to support the 50+ community. I had no idea!"
"Although my initial interest was the Fraud Watch program (having been scammed myself), I have been asked over the years to help out at the AARP table at health fairs and help out with registration and support at other presentations and events. It gave me first-hand experience meeting other people, hearing their concerns and expressing their thanks for what the AARP state and national AARP office does. The staff at the Massachusetts state office are very supportive and appreciative for what volunteers do. It is very rewarding," Hohengasser said.
Hohengasser retired five years ago after working for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for 33 years in employee training and staff development. Speaking in public and doing presentations for AARP was a natural transition post-retirement and came easy to him. He also taught school for nine years in a town on the Canadian border in Maine. Hohengasser has lived in Taunton for the past 26 years and says he never gets tired of working in the yard and gardens, because of the therapeutic nature of spreading mulch and pulling weeds.
When asked what he would tell another prospective volunteer about AARP Massachusetts, he said, "AARP has a lot of volunteer opportunities. You need to explore which ones match your interest. It may be staffing a table at a health fair or event. You'll be teamed up with a more seasoned volunteer or AARP staff member. If you like giving presentations, there are several topics you can choose from. And you will always get the support needed from other volunteer and AARP staff. It's a good feeling to give back."
If you are interested in volunteering, please contact email@example.com.
This story is provided by AARP Massachusetts. Visit the AARP Massachusetts page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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