QUESTION:  I recently met with a group of retired friends and we all spoke about having time on our hands.  Someone suggested volunteering.  Do you have any suggestions?

  ANSWER:  Your question is not only a good one but also very timely as April is “Volunteer Appreciation Month.”

  Volunteering is a wonderful way to make your spare time productive.  Volunteers help make a community a better place to live.  The volunteer also benefits from their service.  It has been proven that volunteering gives greater life satisfaction, provides a network of good friends and increases longevity.

  The Conejo Senior Volunteer Program, known as CSVP, at the Goebel Center helps potential volunteers, age 55 and over, find volunteer positions that match their talents.  CSVP works with over 60 plus organizations that depend on volunteers.

  The CSVP group has four volunteer in-house workshops – the Busy Bees Workshop, The Teddy Bears Workshop, The Crafters Workshop and Nifty Ladies Workshop.  These groups produce handmade crafts for a variety of organizations.  The volunteers sew, knit, crochet and make stuffed bears from scratch.  Their handmade goods are one-of-a-kind and beautifully constructed.  These four groups are always looking for talented help.  If you do hand crafts this could be a good spot for you to consider.

  The Thousand Oaks Teen Center is looking for a volunteer English tutor to help tutor 7th to 12th graders.  This is a wonderful opportunity to work with the youth.

  Gardens of the World is looking for docents to lead tours in a beautiful garden setting — enjoy the outdoors while providing a needed service. 

  Assisted Hospice’s Foundation is looking for “hands to cuddle, paws to love” volunteers to help keep family and pets together during times when health related illnesses make it difficult to care for a pet – great for those who love animals.

  Golden Heart Ranch needs volunteers to work with adults with special needs at the ranch in Agoura Hills.  This is an opportunity to help make life better for those with special needs.

  The Goebel Center has many programs and currently has need for volunteer help in several.

  Goebel’s Breakfast and Senior Nutrition Program is looking for a kitchen assistant to help the chef with kitchen preparations.

  Bingo is a very popular program and Goebel’s Bingo groups currently are looking for Bingo callers.

  The 1st and 3rd Saturdays of each month Goebel offers ballroom dancing.  This program is looking for volunteers to serve as host dancers.  What better way to spend a Saturday evening.

  These are just a few volunteer opportunities to consider.  For more information about CSVP and volunteering call Julie at (805) 381-2742.



  SUNDAY – April 8 – 8:00 am to 1:00 pm – 10th Annual Community Garage Sale – at Goebel Adult Community Center, 1385 E. Janss Road in Thousand Oaks – 50 vendors selling everything you can think of.  For information call (805) 381-2744.

  WEDNESDAY – April 11 – 1:00 to 3:00 pm – Ventura Parkinson’s Disease Support Group meeting at the Lexington Assisted Living, 5450 Ralston Street in Ventura.  For more information call Patty at (805) 766-6070.  No reservations are required.

  THURSDAY – April 12 – 10:00 to 11:30 am – Seminar – “Save Your Brain” – at Agoura Hills Recreation & Event Center, 29900 Ladyface Court, Agoura Hills.  For reservations call (818) 597-7361.

  FRIDAY – April 13 – 8:30 am to 1:00 pm – AARP Driver Safety Refresher Class – at Goebel Adult Community Center, 1385 E. Janss Road in Thousand Oaks.  Reservations can be made at (805) 381-2744.  Cost is $15 for AARP Members; $20 for non-members.

  TUESDAY – April 17 – 9:00 to 11:00 am – Workshop – “Living Within Your Means” at Simi Valley Senior Center, 3900 Avenida Simi in Simi Valley.  For reservations call (805) 583-6363 or stop by the center’s main desk.

  WEDNESDAY/THURSDAY – April 25 & 26 – AARP Smart Driver Full Coarse – at the Pleasant Valley Senior Center, 1605 Burnley Street, Camarillo.  Registration is $15 for AARP Members and $20 for non-members.  For more information call (805) 482-4881.


  Betty Berry is a senior advocate for Senior Concerns.  The advocates are located at the Goebel Adult Community Center, 1385 E. Janss Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91362 or call (805) 495-6250 or e-mail (please include your telephone number.)  You are invited to submit questions on senior issues.



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