It’s volunteer month, and we never get tired of recognizing and thanking the hundreds of volunteers who contribute so much towards the MCH mission.
It’s common knowledge that nursing homes and senior services organizations like MCH rely heavily on volunteer help. What’s less well known is the generosity of our residents in giving of their time as volunteers, both here at MCH and in the broader community.
In a recent general audience, Pope Francis reached out to fellow older adults and reminded them of all they have to offer.
“We, older people, can remind ambitious young people that a life without love is barren. We can tell fearful young people that worrying about the future can be overcome. We can teach young people who are in love with themselves too much that there is more joy in giving than receiving,” the Pope said.
Paul and Barbara Salsini, who moved to Milwaukee Catholic Home in 2011, enjoy volunteering on the second Saturday of each month at the Riverwest Food Pantry. As part of a group from SS. Peter and Paul Parish, they register clients and sort and distribute food items.
The pantry, which began in the late 1970s, provides food assistance to between 500 and 1,000 people a month.
“It’s a humbling experience,” Paul Salsini said. “We’re only there a few hours, but you can’t help thinking ‘there but for the grace of God go I.’”
Pope Francis’s words resonate with the Salsinis.
“I was struck with something Pope Francis said recently, something that of course has always been true: ‘There is more joy in giving than receiving,'” Paul said.
The Salsinis are not alone – receiving the gifts of more time and freedom in their retirement years, many MCH residents find joy in giving of these gifts back to the community. MCH residents volunteer at a variety of sites, including the Audubon Center and Columbia-St. Mary’s Hospital. Many also volunteer in MCH’s Health and Rehabilitation Center.
The MCH community is grateful to all our volunteers, and especially the residents who set an example of retirement life lived to the fullest.
Creativity is ageless!
The 2015 Flourish Festival features events that demonstrate the timeless power of creativity and intergenerational collaboration.
May 3rd features two events that are free and open to the public. Chai Point (1400 N. Prospect) is hosting a Pleine Air, afternoon of painting to music. UWM student and faculty artists will be there to encourage and provide guidance to beginners. All levels of painters welcome!
Also on May 3rd is the Milwaukee Museum Mile Open House and Moving Images performance. During the past year, UWM students facilitated storytelling workshops with area elders, inspired by images from the collections of the five museums. The Moving Images performers visit each museum, perform a story, and invite the audience to create one of their own. 11:30 Jewish Museum; 12:30 Museum of Wisconsin Art on the Lake; Charles Allis Museum 1:30; Villa Terrace at 2:30, and Northpoint Gallery and Lighthouse at 3:30. FREE and fun for families of all ages.
On May 7th, UWM Dance students and St. Johns on the Lake residents, guided by choreographer and DanceWorks Artistic Director Dani Kuepper, perform COLOR FLOW. The dance is inspired by the paintings of elder resident artist Doris Gendelman. At Chai Point, 1400 Prospect, 11 am. FREE.
On May 14th at St. Johns on the Lake, come see FLOURISH an art exhibit that tells the story of the full year of intergenerational arts collaborations including photos and stories of the TimeSlips storytelling circles; a photography project from Arlington Court and UWM’s Community Arts students; and photos of musical theatre workshops with people with memory loss offered by Stage Right Theatre.
FLOURISH FEST events emerge from a year of workshops and projects from the Creative Trust, an alliance committed to fostering life-long learning through the arts. www.creativetrustmke.com. Trust members include: Chai Point and Jewish Home and Care Center; EastCastle Place; Milwaukee Catholic Home; St. John’s on the Lake; Milwaukee County Dept on Aging; UWM’s Peck School of the Arts; UWM’s Center for Community-based Learning, Leadership and Research.
For more information contact Anne Basting, UWM Theatre Professor and facilitator of the Creative Trust MKE. firstname.lastname@example.org