Since its inception in 1971, CHEER has relied on volunteers to carry out its mission of providing a variety of services to people in need. CHEER employees and volunteers serve over 30,000 senior citizens living throughout Sussex County every year. Our volunteers provide homebound meals, transportation to and from medical appointments, companionship for those who have few friends or relatives living nearby, and assistance with the daily operations of our seven CHEER Activity Centers and the Community Center. Without the generosity of our volunteers, we would be unable to continue many of the programs and services that bring comfort and joy to those in need.
Below are some of the services CHEER provides to the community. If you would like to receive a particular service, please call Elizabeth Walls at 302-515-3040. If you would like to volunteer, please fill out this brief form and a CHEER representative will contact you within 1-3 business days.
Volunteer Services and Opportunities
Homebound Meal Delivery:
Approximately 130,000 meals are delivered each year to homebound seniors who are no longer able to drive, shop, or cook on their own. Demand for this service continues to rise and hundreds of CHEER volunteers meet the challenge every day by travelling throughout the county to ensure that no senior goes hungry.
A grocery store on wheels, the Mobile Mini-Mart is stocked with over 175 staple grocery items. The Mobile Mini-Mart is staffed by a part-time driver and volunteer helpers who deliver groceries to homebound seniors or disabled Sussex County residents who are no longer able to shop on their own.
This program enlists volunteers to take seniors to and from medical appointments. Volunteers donate their time and use their own vehicles to transport ambulatory seniors who are unable to drive and do not have family members who can take them to the doctor. There is no charge for the transportation, but donations are accepted. Volunteers are able to receive mileage reimbursement.
Phone Friends and Visiting Friends:
These two programs offer telephone reassurance and companionship to seniors living alone. Phone calls and visits are made by volunteers to check on the safety and well being of those who do not have family living nearby. These phone calls and visits provide many with their only link to the outside world and brighten the day of those living alone.
Pets and their owners offer affection and companionship to long-term care residents in their home or nursing homes on a regular basis.
CHEER Activity Center Volunteer:
CHEER Activity Centers offer hot meals and an array of programs and services for mature adults. Volunteers help serve midday lunches, help plan cultural trips and educational seminars, play games, and serve as greeters and receptionists at the seven Activity Centers located throughout Sussex County. Additionally, we are looking for Activity Coordinators at each of our seven CHEER Centers. This volunteer position will assist the Center Directors in planning and implementing exciting activities for Center members.
CHEER Community Center:
Volunteers at the CHEER Community Center serve as receptionists and greeters and help with other tasks as assigned, including giving people tours of the building, inputting data into computers, answering phones, and other clerical duties.