VOA Colorado’s Foster Grandparents recognized during Annual Mayor Recognition Day

Zachary Kinder
Volunteers of America
Denver, CO 80205

March 20, 2017
Media Release

Colorado Springs — Volunteers of America Colorado's foster grandparents in Colorado Springs were recognized on Monday during the 5th Annual Mayor Recognition Day for National Service, along with three other area nonprofit organizations.

Foster grandparents are a group of motivated seniors who enjoy working with children, focusing on improving literacy and numeracy skills. For volunteers like Diane Hayward and Kat McNally, who have been involved with the program for a couple years, having an opportunity to connect with children and help them succeed has been its own reward.

"If you can make a difference in one child's life, that's the most rewarding thing you can do," McNally said. "Here I'm making a difference in many children's lives. It's so rewarding both for me and the kids."

There are more than 140 foster grandparents serving alongside Hayward and McNally in the Denver, Fort Collins and Colorado Springs areas, providing more than 500 children with one-on-one attention they might not otherwise receive.

"Foster grandparents feel good about their time spent helping a child succeed, as well as bridging the gap between generations," Project Manager Patti Krattenmaker said. "Their reach extends beyond the children to teachers, parents and the community. When our seniors are engaged and active, everyone benefits."

The nation's cities and counties are increasingly turning to national service as a cost-effective strategy to address local challenges. Unleashing the power of residents through programs that create a positive, lasting impact like Foster Grandparents can make our communities a better place to live.

"National service shows the best of the American spirit, people turning toward problems instead of away from problems, working together to find community solutions," Mayor John Suthers said during the recognition. "Today as we thank national service members for their commitment, let us pledge to do our part to strengthen our city through service and volunteering."

The Mayor and County Recognition Day for National Service is a nationwide bipartisan effort to recognize the positive impact of national service, coordinated with the Corporation for National and Community Service.

For more information about the Foster Grandparent Program in Colorado Springs, call 719-632-1448. For residents in the Denver area, call 303-297-0408.

Volunteers of America is a national, nonprofit, faith-based organization dedicated to helping those in need live healthy, safe and productive lives. Since 1896, our ministry of service has supported and empowered America's most vulnerable groups, including the frail elderly, people with disabilities, at-risk youth, homeless individuals, women in need, and veterans and their families. For more information about Volunteers of America, visit www.voacolorado.org