DOROT, Inc.

Rating: 4.88 stars   42 reviews

Issues: Homeless & Housing, Human Services, Seniors

Location: 171 W 85th St New York NY 10024 USA

Mission: DOROT’s mission is to enhance the lives of the elderly in the Greater New York Metropolitan Area through a dynamic partnership of volunteers, professionals and elders; to foster mutually beneficial interaction between the generations; and to provide education and leadership in developing volunteer-based programs for the elderly nationally and internationally.

2009 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Rating: 5 stars  

I learned about Dorot when I was in my 39'w (I'm now 65) and have been volunteering with them ever since. The reason I love them so is that while yes, they make sure that elderly people see doctors and have enough to eat and are generally cared for, their sights have always been squarely set on quality of life, on making sure that their "clients" are enjoying their latter years. As a Dorot volunteer, I've taken people to concerts and theaters, I helped one woman write a 15-page memoir to leave to her grandchildren, I helped a blind man pack for a move. But most of all, I've visited people and given them a welcome ear for their life stories, for their joys as well as their concerns. Dorot is focused on making old age a time to relish, not to endure.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Absolutely making new friends. But more important, feeling like I was making a real difference, at no cost to myself, either monetarily or psychically. I have always thoroughly enjoyed the volunteer visits.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

As I said above, very good about myself and my role in the world.

1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

Dorot is about 35 years old -- I've been volunteering for them for 33 of those years. Their goal is to enhance the experience of elders in every sense -- physical, intellectual, emotional. And their preferred method is to enlist young people as volunteers to do so, those helping to bridge the generation gap for both sides. They have computer tutors, they offer telephone university, they have cemetary visits, they run the gamut. As a volunteer I have visited home-bound seniors, delivered birthday cakes, taken seniors to doctors and to concerts, helped host Thanksgiving dinners, visited seniors in the hospital, all kinds of things. I even once helped a senior write her memoirs, to leave for her grandkids. And it is as much a joy for me as it is for the seniors. When I'm finally too old to volunteer, I will transition into Dorot client -- they are the best organization for serving seniors I have ever seen.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

...the sheer joy and gratitude that the seniors show when a volunteer comes to brighten their day

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

i've thought about this -- and so help me, I wouldn't change a thing. They have it down pat!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

I'm totally satisfied

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

I'm 63, and serving as the volunteer rather than the client has always made me feel young.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

1 people found this review helpful

I've been volunteering for Dorot for 30 years -- almost since its inception. And last year I retired myself -- and one of the first things I did was contact Dorot and tell them to sign me up for lots, lots more. The reason I love --and respect -- this organization so much is that they look at seniors in the gestalt, as people who want to live life to the fullest, not just to the longest. So yes, if a senior needs help getting to the doctor, or is homebound and needs help or company, Dorot is there. But Dorot is also there for seniors who want to go to a museum or to the theater, who want to dance at a thanksgiving party, who want to write their memoirs for their grandchildren (I just finished that particular assignment -- and the woman's gratitude was worth a great deal more than any freelance check). I am blessed with excellent health at 62 -- but it is a true comfort to me to know that, as I age and eventually move from the status of volunteer to that of client, Dorot will be there for me.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

in the gratitude I have felt from homebound seniors I've visited, or vision-impaired seniors I've assisted. And when I've notified Dorot of a problem -- e.g., the blind man who was moving had not contacted a moving company -- they immediately solved it.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

getting the opportunity to deal with seniors as people, as equals, as friends, not just as over-the-hill supplicants

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

incredibly dedicated and compassionate people

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand its services throughout the city,and create a computerized skills bank

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-10-01

Rating: 5 stars  

In 1989 I was searching for a hands-on volunteer opportunity and learned about DOROT. After a thorough interview I was matched with Julia for weekly Friendly Visiting. That first visit started my involvement with this exceptional organization. As our visits progressed, I became more aware of the in-depth concern and respect that DOROT shows its elders and volunteers throughout its many programs. This lead to an invitation to join the board where I have served on the executive committee as secretary, president elect, president (4 years), board chair, and vice president. I have taught a course on University Without Walls, our teleconference classes, for 10 years; I have experienced Cemetery Visits, Thanksgiving Banquets, Holiday Package Deliveries and a number of other programs over the past 22 years. DOROT is nonpareil in serving the elderly and the community. I know this as lay leader and as a volunteer. This year’s audit showed that 83% if every dollar that was raised went directly into program. I am proud to have served this organization and to watch the smiles on the faces of the elderly. Join us!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

enhancing the lives of the elderly through programs that delay or avoid institutionalization through socializing and life-sustaining programs.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Have just finished a year long strategic planning phase, I would say that through this process, we are already addressing any changes that I and others considered important.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

How did you learn about this organization?

Trough an annual report that told DOROT'S story.

What is this organization's top short-term priority?

Alleviating isolation of the elderly by bringing the generations together

What is its top priority in the long run?

To better serve an increasing number of elder people as the population ages in the US. With little government aide available, it will be necessary to raise more funds in order to address the growing need for more complex services in an increasing difficult financial times.

Review from CharityNavigator
Rating: 5 stars  

Dorot is an organization that provides help to the elderly, on a personal level. As a volunteer, you get immediate gratification of providing companionship, friendship or just support for someone in need. Dorot has the most professional staff that works with the volunteer to assure the best effort is being delivered to the "clients".

I look forward to cooking for a group of elderly folks weekly and I know, they too look forward to my visit. We have a connection I never knew I could have. As I meet new people, I know, they too, will become my friend as the weeks go by. Sometimes I 'm one of the first people they learn to trust again, and it feels very special to be "let in" to their life.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing a client take charge of their lives and begin a new and healthy life.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Expand their facilities once again, so they can help many more people.

1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

7 people found this review helpful

I had a wonderful experience visiting a woman who taught me how to be the woman I always wanted to be. My friendly visiting friend was an 80 year old non ambulatory brilliant woman, who lived life every day to the fullest, with passion and no fears. I fetl exposed at first, at her forthrightness. Her directness was so raw. Her experiences leaving pre-Nazi Belgium to NY showed me how fearlessness and following your instinct is the best way to live life. Now, I enjoy another volunteer experience at Dorot. I get to be humbled every Tuesday night as I cook dinner at the HOmeless Prevention Program for elderly people who have somehow ended up homeless. As we watch Jeopardy together, I realize how special each person is, as everyone has some individual area of knowledge others don't. I feel so priveleged to meet these brave souls come together to rebuild their lives. I thank Dorot for these experiences! My life is so defined by my time with Dorot.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing someone who had been sleeping in the subways, to be someone feeling safe in a group situation. The Homeless Prevention Program of Dorot not only helps someone to find housing, but "socializes" them to trusting society enough to fit in again.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Learning how special people I never would have met are.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Incredible. The highest level of social workers I have ever seen. Not only smart, but able to get along with all the strange personalities you confront from the homeless.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Open more housing centers for the homeless. Provide more food for the elderly. Have more social workers helping clients. More office space for these workers that provide so much for the homeless.

Ways to make it better...

It couldnt be better, perhaps bigger. Better facilities for cooking and housing the clients.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Housing costs. Getting funds to be able to provide help for the homeless.

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-10-01

Rating: 5 stars  

5 people found this review helpful

One of my most memorable visits involved a 90 year old woman who was almost completely deaf. She had suffered a devastating fire in her apartment 5 years prior, during which all of her possessions had been ruined. However, instead of dwelling on this unfortunate event, she explained to me that she was not upset over it, but rather thankful for her life and for the people that helped her after the fire. The way she was able to have such an appreciative and optimistic outlook on her tragedy really put things into perspective for me, as do all the seniors I visit every week. Every senior has a different lesson to teach. For her, it was to not dwell on past events, and find the light in every dark occurrence. I am reminded of what's really important in life, and being a junior in high school, I all too often think that college applications are of this immense importance. Its hard to believe that I am in fact the volunteer; I always think of myself as the student or friend. Its these mutualistic relationships I form that have me falling in love with DOROT over and over again.

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The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

The most sensitive and selfless staff I've ever met from any type of organization.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-10-01

Rating: 4 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

Dorot gave me a new appreciation for not only the greater Jewish community, but also the elderly. I've met people from all walks of life with all kinds of interesting perspectives.

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If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

reach out to more and more people, enriching the lives of many

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-10-01

Rating: 5 stars  

5 people found this review helpful

In my experience, Dorot has been a really great help to seniors living in Manhattan. However, it helps not only seniors, but it is really great for teenagers like myself to be able to get to know what it was like for the seniors growing up, and being able to relate to them. There is nothing more satisfying than to see the smile on a senior's face when they get a visit on their birthday, or when they figure out some new cool thing on a computer. On one occasion, a senior needed help installing a voice recognizer on her computer in order to type things just by speaking. After I helped her install it, the thing worked so well that I strongly considered getting one myself.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Being able to connect with the seniors at their homes. It is a great feeling when I hear a story from a senior and then say that I know exactly how they feel.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

Rating: 4 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I am the co-chair of the Social Action Committee of my synagogue. For the last four years we have individually and as a group participated in Dorot's Thanksgiving meal delivery programs in which volunteers deliver a Thanksgiving meal and stay for a friendly visit with a homebound elderly client. I also personally participate by making phone calls for their delivery programs for Rosh Hashana and Thanksgiving, The feedback that I get by making those phone calls from people who speak so very positive of the work of Dorot is very gratifying to me as a volunteer. Dorot means generations in Hebrew, and is a play on the Hebrew phrase, L'Dor V'Dor from generation to generation. Volunteers of all ages benefit by seeing how vital and productive some seniors can be well into their nineties; and last night I spoke with a happy centenarian who will be attending the Thanksgiving Banquet in a wheelchair with her aide. Such interaction gives me hope for my own later years (I am 68, an age that I once thought to be old.)Dorot is a non-sectarian agency under Jewish auspices.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Meeting with senior clients and seeing how older people can continue to be vital with supports from the community.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I have been a volunteer for Dorot for several years now. Their work is absolutely outstanding. I gone on birthday visits and seen the faces of seniors light up when they are told that their friends at Dorot are thinking of them on their birthdays and have sent a birthday cake. I have accompanied seniors on cultural events to museums, and watching how Dorot enables the seniors to interact and engage with other seniors is outstanding. I strongly believe that if seniors are kept busy, socially engaged, and culturally active, they will continue to be young at heart and enjoy each moment in life. What better gift could be given to people in their older ages? The work of Dorot is truly impacting and I have seen firsthand how their work has changed the lives of so many seniors (and all volunteers gain a tremendous amount as well!)

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The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

absolutely incredible. The staff shows a great amount of respect and friendliness in dealing with the seniors. They are warm and loving and passionate about the work that they do.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-10-01

Rating: 5 stars  

1 people found this review helpful

I had been searching for a volunteer assignment with senior citizens for months when a friend told me about DOROT. I applied to DOROT and before long I was making more progress than I had with any of the previous organizations I had contacted. Pretty soon, I was interviewed and cleared the screening process. I have now been a DOROT Friendly Visitor volunteer for two months and it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I was matched with a delightful senior citizen. We thoroughly enjoy each other's company and look forward to our weekly visits. We have taken walks, gone to the movies and shared meals together. I have also accompanied her on Doctors' visits. She, on the other hand, is very encouraging and supportive of me. We both feel our lives have been enriched as a result of our relationship. Thanks to the amazing staff at DOROT for bringing us together!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

the effort and attentiveness the staff involved took to match me and my senior. The staff obviously listened to each of us keenly and did their best to meet our needs . . . and they did!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

A well-organized and well-respected organization. The mechanics of large-scale projects are so beautifully organized. For example, for holiday package delivery there is an orientation with a short video and a Q&A period. There are also options (such as the chance to make a card or choose a partner and/or recipient) that allow you to tailor the experience to your group (in my case, my children's desires).

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my home visits to seniors. The dignity of the seniors was of paramount importance to the organizers.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the personal touch and the respect paid to the seniors.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Incredibly diverse. EVERYBODY comes to DOROT.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Expand to meet the needs of the public that already participates in its activities.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-9-01

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