How Can I Help the Elderly in My Community?

So you want to give something back to the community by helping the seniors in your area? 

I have to be honest that this is a great way to engage, network and connect with the people around you. By doing this, you will only come closer to the seniors in your area, but grow a good reputation among younger people as well. 

According to the latest research by the NHS, the number of lonely or lonely or socially isolated seniors is on the rise. I know that the NHS is a UK-based institution, but the situation of older adults is almost the same in all developing countries. 

By lending a helping hand, you can bring about a massive positive change in their lives. Your act of kindness will improve their mental health to a degree that is unimaginable. 

Here are some easy ways to help the elderly in your community

Here are some easy ways to help the elderly in your community

Listen to their problems 

It’s always a good idea to listen to someone talk their heart out. Try to start a conversation with the elderly neighbor in your community. After you begin the conversation with a simple “Hi” or “How’s your day sir/mam?” you will know if they really want your help.  

Do not be pushy. It is possible that a particular senior in your area does not need help. In such a case, simply greet them, and walk past them with a smile on your face. 

If the other person is interested in conversing with you, invite them for a cup of coffee or tea. Tell them that you are volunteering to help seniors and are willing to listen to them talk. It’s always good, to be honest, and upfront, this reduces any chances of confusion. 

Offer them free food

Offering hot meals is one of the best ways you can ensure the health and well-being of seniors in your area. Make a list of folks in your area who do have someone to cook for them. Or maybe they are too old and fragile to cook a meal for themselves. 

You can either cook by yourself or buy home-cooked meals from a restaurant or a supermarket. I prefer cooking food at my home and delivering them in convenient packages. 

When you deliver food, try to have a conversation. Find out what kind of food they prefer. Do they have any favorites that they want you to make for them?

Also, make a note of food items they are not allowed to eat. Anyways it is always good to avoid sugar and excess salt in food. Take note if the person delivering food has any food allergies. 

Help them out with housekeeping work

A clean home is very important for the well-being of the elderly. When you visit the home of your senior neighbor, gently glance at the common area, yard, bedroom, kitchen, and other rooms in their home. 

If there’s dust settled on the furniture, ask them if they need help cleaning it. 

Sometimes seniors struggle to move heavy furniture or electronic gadgets in the home, hence they fail to get rid of dirt settled in the corners. You can help them move the heavy items, so they can sweep. 

It doesn’t have to be a solo effort from your side. You can team up with them or a family member of theirs who is willing to help. 

When you enter their bedroom, the first thing you must do is open up the window. Do this during the day, so the sunlight will get rid of bad odor or “old people smell” in their room. 

Some seniors may not be comfortable with extra light in their room, here you can ask them to step out of their room so you can do the cleaning in their absence. 

Visit the nearest nursing home or assisted living facility

You can one day visit a nursing home or assisted living facility near you. Before heading to a care home, make sure to call the staff and book a free tour. The staff will show you around the area of the home. This will give you a good idea of how senior residents live.

As the care home staff if they need any volunteers. Most care homes need volunteers who can help them out with events such as free yoga classes, free tai chi classes, and food distribution in the community.

You can also meet the residents and get to know them better. It’s possible that some of the residents miss their families— who do not visit them very often. 

Make a list of residents who fall into this category. Try to visit them at least once a week. Bring gifts, care packages, and food items for them so they feel loved and cared for. 

Help them learn about the latest gadgets 

Teaching tech to seniors is an activity that must be done on a one-on-one basis. You can always conduct free-of-cost tech seminars in your area, but I am not sure it will help each one of them.

I would not assume that all seniors struggle with tech. Hence, you must try to learn about each person’s background. Have they worked in the tech industry before? Are they gadget-savvy?

Make a list of seniors who struggle with a particular technology (let’s say social media sites). Visit them individually and then how to create an account, find online friends, and message.

I have noticed that seniors are fond of Facebook more than any other social media site. Seniors are also very keen to follow the news or learn new recipes on YouTube. You can make them aware of the algorithms used in a video search engine. This prevents them from going down online rabbit holes. 

Additionally, make them aware of the latest scams and frauds. This is something that can be conveyed to a larger audience via a seminar or a casual meeting. Focus on teaching them about avoiding scams that target seniors.   


Remember that you don’t have to be wealthy to give back to the community. A simple act such as listening to a lonely senior or feeding someone home-cooked food can go a long way. If you are struggling to find good ideas to help seniors in your area, I suggest you check out volunteer sites such as AARP and VOA.

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