WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - With Americans living longer, and the cost of living barely keeping pace with social security, many senior citizens are having to go back into the job world to support themselves.
United Way's Senior Aides program helps find temporary jobs for people 55 and older who are at or near the federal poverty level. They are given the chance to work part-time at one of 70 non-profit or government agencies.
Like many of these workers, Pat Reese had to leave a previous job because of a disability, and she had a tough time finding new employment. Through Senior Aides, she was placed as a receptionist with Pender Adult Services, where she now works 20 hours a week.
"It's a good feeling just to be able to take care of yourself, to know you can still do a job," said Pat.
Who wins here? Everyone.
Thanks to United Way, participants are on their way to gaining financial stability, while also learning job skills they need to find permanent employment. The agencies benefit from hosting workers who strive to once again contribute to their community.
Workers like Lucy Henry, who is enriching the lives of others at Pender Adult Services after losing a member of her family.
"You couldn't have done a better thing for us seniors, because we need some help," said Lucy. "Everybody forgot about us, but we're still here and able to help others."