Washoe County Manager Katy Simon and county officials from the departments involved in the volunteer efforts will be on hand to talk about opportunities for citizens to help provide critical human services to some of the county’s most vulnerable citizenry, especially seniors and infants.
“We’ll be presenting information about ways a citizen can make a real difference in the lives of some of the most at-risk individuals in our community,” said Marlene Reynolds, Washoe County’s volunteer coordinator who is a volunteer herself. “In some cases, the citizen can interact with the individual directly, and in other cases they’d be performing a task that supports county services delivered to that individual.”
While Washoe County has relied on the generosity and talent of volunteers for years to help deliver excellent public services, Washoe County commissioners directed that new emphasis be placed on the use of volunteers for feasible tasks given budget cuts that have resulted in a 20 percent reduction in the county’s workforce.
Additional volunteer opportunities within the county have been identified, and the county is hoping the public will respond with interest to these volunteer positions and will make a big impact in someone’s life and the community’s overall quality of life.
The new volunteer opportunities that will be discussed include being a companionship volunteer to supplement the county Public Guardian Office’s work with individuals assigned to their care by the courts. Many of these individuals are elderly and experiencing some form of dementia and simply need more frequent visits to check on their welfare. Other opportunities also exist with the county’s Social Services and Senior Services departments, specifically helping in their efforts to educate new parents on the proper way to safely put an infant to sleep as well as accompanying staff to check on the welfare of children and seniors.
No reservations are necessary to attend today’s session, which will be held in the County Commission Chambers inside Building A at the Washoe County Administrative Complex at Ninth Street and Wells Avenue in Reno. For more information, visit www.washoecounty.us/citizens. Citizens can apply for volunteer positions online at this site. Depending upon the volunteer position, a background check might be required.