by Allison Rossi Utter, Volunteer & Community Outreach Manager
Grace Daines has been chosen for the August Volunteer of the Month for her outstanding contributions through the Health Benefits Assistance program.
Grace has been volunteering with Senior Services for about five years. She started as a Meals on Wheels driver. Grace reports, “I retired in 2017 and knew I could not sit at home.” She said that she delivered Meals on Wheels for a year or so however, wanted to help in other ways. She saw the opportunity posted for a Health Benefits Assistance volunteer and thought it would be easy since she worked in the Healthcare field for over 30 years. Grace chuckled telling the story and said, “the joke was on me.” Grace completed a Statewide certification training in Medicare and Medicaid in April 2019. She then shadowed current volunteers and was able to see clients on her own starting that summer. Grace claims that the volunteer job is not an easy one, however we believe she makes it look very simple. Barb Zebley-Oldani, Director of the Health Benefits Assistance Program says, “Grace is very knowledgeable, thorough and detail oriented. She explains Medicare to individuals in a calm, easy to understand way.” Grace recently offered to provide a presentation on Medicare. Barb, an attendee, and a Care Coordinator all raved about the wonderful job that Grace did in providing this complex information in an easy to understand manner. Barb further exclaimed that, “Grace goes above and beyond to assist. She exhibits a positive attitude and adapts easily to the frequent changes with Medicare.” When asked why she continues to volunteer, Grace elaborated, “I am happy to help people. You get so much more out of volunteering then you give. It is very empowering and rewarding when you can see the light bulb go on over their heads when they understand Medicare.” Grace has also been a volunteer for our COVID vaccine clinics. She is always willing to help whenever she can!
Grace has lived in Midland for 20 years. She has been married to her husband Joe for 44 years and they have 3 grown children together. Grace was a Physical Therapist for 32 years! She boasted that she, “Loved” what she did. Grace wears other volunteer hats too. She is a literacy volunteer at the Legacy Center where she tutors school aged children. Grace also provides guided tours at The Pines, Herbert H. Dow’s House located in Dow Gardens. When she isn’t volunteering she loves to craft and travel. Grace has been to 48 out of the 63 National Parks in the United States along with numerous National Monuments.
The Health Benefits Assistance program can take the guesswork out of what health benefits are best for you. Whether it is Medicare, Medicare Part D prescription plans or Social Security Extra Help, Senior Services can lend a hand in wading through the abundance of health benefit choices at no cost to you! We will help you make sense of programs like Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement Plans. Start by calling our Health Benefits Assistance Hotline at 989-633-3748 to be matched with a volunteer.
If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, call Allison Rossi Utter at (989) 633-3741. We have many opportunities available.
Thank you Grace for your continued service to the older adults in Midland County and congratulations on being chosen as the Volunteer of the Month!
We Need Volunteers!
Senior Services is in need of Friendly Visitor, Shopping, Meals on Wheels drivers, Transportation drivers, Team Handyman and Activity & Dining Centers/Seasons Entertainers (Do you play an instrument? Magic? Puppets?).
If you choose to volunteer with us, you will be embarking on a rewarding adventure that will have a huge impact on the older adults of Midland County! And you will join one of the finest groups of people we know – our experienced, trusted and valued volunteers!
Visit us at www.SeniorServicesMidland.org to fill out a volunteer contact form or call Allison Rossi Utter, Volunteer and Community Outreach Manager, at 989-633-3741.