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Meet Jeronica Hardison, Visiting Volunteer

Jeronica Hardison, a Visiting Volunteer, was matched with participant, Jan Plott, over 10 years ago. Ms. Hardison was first introduced to Family Lifeline through a local news story about Visiting Volunteers, a program that matches volunteers with older adults or persons with disabilities. The program strives to promote community connection and reduce loneliness and isolation among those living alone. Ten years later, Ms. Hardison says, "Jan and I have become very close. I see her as a good friend.”

At the start of their relationship, Ms. Hardison would make weekly visits to Ms. Plott’s home. The two would go to lunch, take walks around the neighborhood, go to the store, pick up medication or packages, and go shopping at the mall. Ms. Hardison would also take Ms. Plott out to celebrate her birthday. When in-person visits were put on hold during the pandemic, Ms. Hardison and Ms. Plott maintained their relationship through weekly phone calls.

Volunteering gives Ms. Hardison, a former nurse, the opportunity to leverage her caregiving skills. She states, “I’m used to caring and doing things for others. I get to be a part of the community still.” Ms. Hardison says that volunteering became an outlet after her husband passed away. “I get to help others and it also helps me make a difference in my life and other people’s lives.”

The partnership between Ms. Hardison and Ms. Plott has grown and strengthened over the years, and the two have remained by each other’s side during vulnerable times. Ms. Hardison supported Ms. Plott through a stroke and a hip replacement, while Ms. Plott was there through Ms. Hardison’s recent knee surgery. Ms. Hardison is still recovering, but she is already planning to visit Ms. Plott as soon as she can drive again.

From strangers, to companions, to friends, life hasn’t been able to keep them apart.

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