I will start my 22nd year with SWMOA as an employee in January. I read an article in the newspaper in 1992 where they needed volunteers for their Income Tax Program (TCE) so I took the training and that's where my story begins. My very first experience with the Agency were positive, they are a caring non profit organization and their goals are to assist and help change the lives of our seniors and their families. Providing services & programs has increased the quality of seniors lives in our area. Families have the support, help & assistance needed to help their loved ones. I'm proud to work for an outstanding group of dedicated people that are focused on changing lives for others. They also provide a great opportunity for people to give back to their communities by volunteering at local Senior Centers. There isn't a greater reward than putting a smile on a persons face and making a difference in their lives.
I have been working with SWMOA for over 15 years. In that time SWMOA has never stopped striving to improve the programs they offer. They a committed to achieve their goals. They have a mission statement that they truly believe in. That is what makes them a wonderful organization. I know that they are committed to help seniors and their family's. I truly believe that anyone who works for SWMOA would take out of their own pockets to help a senior in need. They are a true leader in being an advocate for seniors.
I have been working with SWMOA for approximately in many different capacity in all that time they have never failed to be a constant source of support and an inspiration. There ability to raise and distribute those funds in a humane and professional maner has provide me in my senior years satisfaction opportunities to serve and growth I would not have had without that effort. I truly applaude them for their fine work. They are an exceptional team.
I have been associated with SWMOA for the past 10 years. It carries out its mission to assist seniors in many ways. SWMOA serves as a resource for seniors looking for assistance in solving issues concerned with nutrition and health and through its services to improving the quality of life of seniors. SWMOA is dedicated to helping seniors remain in their homes through the home delivered meals programs and personal assistance programs.
I personally have volunteered to be a tax counselor for the elderly and volunteer at a local senior center to assist the elderly in preparation of their tax returns. The seniors I assist are so grateful for this service as it of a free service to them.
I personally refer many seniors and their caretakers to SWMOA as I know they will be directed to resources available to them in the community. I have received very positive and appreciative responses from the individuals I have referred.
I first became accquainted with SWMOA when I needed help looking for hearing aids for a friend. I received th most wonderful persn to come to my hose and help us. She is still a friend today. Then, I needed help with my health insurance and I met Juli Stoval and Liz that is when I was and have been Mrs. Claus for three years there and 27 years at Evangel. I have volunteered at Northview, Sourthside, and Republic Senior Centers. I have been a driver for two pf tje semoprcenters. I feel SWMOA has been the solid rock for meal deliveries which help so many homebound seniors who would not get got meals unless they received this help. I am now a Silver Haired Legislature Senator and am secretary of its board I have sent many people to SWMOA for different services as they are the best! I have sent many people there as I know they will be treated fairly and honestly by all the employees there. It has been an honor to be associated with them and all the help they have given me and my friends.
SWMOA has been a vital part of our community for many years, I don't know what our seniors would do without the many programs that are provided through this agency. I have spent the better part of my life working with this agency and the many dedicated employees and volunteers. The lives you touch and the lives that touch you make you realize just what a difference this agency plays in the lives of our seniors.
It has been my honor to serve as a SWMOA Foundation Board Member for the past several years. This agency serves such a great need for our aging population! - I am particularly impressed with the dedication of the staff and all the volunteers - they put in many hours to provide support and resources for seniors in a wide region. May God bless this organization!
25 years ago, I started volunteering at my local Senior Center, which is funded by Southwest Missouri Office on Aging. I saw firsthand how dedicated they were to helping seniors in all aspects of aging. So when an opportunity came to join their "team" I leaped at the chance. I have been the Marshfield Senior Center Administrator, and an employee of SWMOA, for 3 years now, and I can truly say, I would not want to work anywhere else. I have the best job in the world: I get paid to help people, to be "the first call for answers" for all senior needs. It is fun, challenging, and so needed in our communities. I look forward to coming to work every day, and how many of us can really say that we look forward to going to work?
SWMOA is an organization that goes unnoticed most of the time until services are needed. SWMOA sometimes is the agency who picks up the pieces and puts the family or client back in the right direction.
I have worked with the SWMOA agency for 14 years and have seen daily, the different the services SWMOA provides to enrich the lives of seniors and their families. SWMOA works to be the advocate so resources and assistance is available to help others.
I have worked in the nonprofit world for 17 years, the last four at SWMOA as a senior center administrator. SWMOA puts seniors first in everything that they do. The agency supports the senior centers and makes it possible for us to offer educational programs that directly impact seniors quality of life.
I have been a part of SWMOA for 3 1/2 years now. I am involved in a local senior center on a day to day basis. The work done there is phenomenal. I see Seniors lives being changed because the Center is available to them. The majority of seniors that come are widows and widowers. They come looking for a place to meet people, make new friends, and enjoy activities with other people their own age. I hear many of them expressing their gratitude for the Center and how it has changed their life for the better. They are no longer lonely and friendless. They make lasting friendships. They come in and go out with smiles on their faces, a spring in their step, and joy in their heart.
I have been involved with the local Senior Center for 11 years and have gotten to know the SWMOA staff pretty well. They are some of the most dedicated, sincere, caring people I have ever met. Many have been with the organization for a lot of years because they believe and know that what they do makes a huge difference in the quality of life for many of the Senior Citizens.
This will be my third year volunteering in the Santa's Little Helper program. The SWMOA staff work very hard to make sure those seniors who will be alone for Christmas receive something special to make their holiday a little happier.
The SWMOA staff are dedicated to provide programs which benefit all seniors in the area like the annual Wellness Fair.
I am a board member for the past year. I have been truely amazed at the dedication of all the members of the staff and volunteers. Going to the local community centers has always inspired me with how dedecated they are to the mission. The passion they show for others is truely amazing.
I've been a Board Member and Officer of the Executive Board of SWMOA. It is always very gratifying to find organizations with very dedicated staff, willing to go the second mile. This is not the norm, in today's time.
With the Leadership of the CEO (Past & Present), they have built a very fine organization that has their customer's values and concerns at heart.
I believe their dedication and accountability, among other things, are one of the primary reasons they are an elite organization. Staff members at all levels show a caring and concern for all individuals they interface with.
The integrity of the organization can be seen from the top down.
SWMOA is very knowledgeable on key legislative and government-related items.
In my estimation, SWMOA has proven time-and-time again to be a top-notch quality organization.
I have been with SWMOA for just a short time, but I could have never imagined the dedication in which the company gives for the seniors. This is not just a job to this company, it is a passion and a voice for seniors! If it was not for the company I could or matter of fact would not want to know where these seniors would be. Sometimes we are the only people the seniors even communicate with, they know we care and aren't just going to let them fall in the shadows..... SWMOA provides so many services to the seniors. The seniors know they can come to us no matter what the question or status they may live without feeling judged. Technology grows more and more leaving behind the ones who suffered for our country. SWMOA is very passionate in the goals we have for the seniors and we will not let them fall in the cracks. This organization is amazing and I am blessed with the opportunity to work for them! God Bless SWMOA and those we serve!
As a community volunteer in several organizations, I am very impressed with the impact that SWMOA makes on the communities it serves. The senior centers that it supports are the center of activity and support in many small and large towns across the Ozarks. SWMOA has the most caring and dedicated staff that I have ever been a part of.
I have worked for this organization for over 5 years now and cannot begin to explain the fulfillment that it has given my life. I have gone into homes of clients for assessments, and in helping them, feel that I am the one that has been helped. I have met so many wonderful people and feel blessed to have the opportunity to offer any assistance. SWMOA strives to serve its people to the utmost capacity, whether in their homes or in the Senior Centers.
I presently work at The Gardens Senior Living but have been in the geriatric arena for over 13 yrs. My passion for working with the senior population grew when I saw the need for public awareness in our community. My skills as a former educator and social worker have prepared me to conjugate resources that are applicable to this industry and develop and embody information beneficial to the community of senior citizens in which I serve. I became a Foundation Board Member 3 yrs. ago for this very reason. This institution fulfills all of what's needed to incorporate the needs in our community and the counties it serves. This agency allows me to be a part of fundraising and volunteering to help increase what services that are available for the aging.
The Southwest Missouri Office on Aging supports seniors in their catchment area in so many ways. I am a member of the Silver Haired Legislature which the Southwest Missouri Office on Aging sponsors. The Silver Haired Legislature selects issues that will better or enhance the senior citizens in our state. We then take those issues to our State Legislatures. We continue to advocate for these issues and many have been formulated in to statute to help our most frail elderly. Without the support of the Southwest Missouri Office on Aging, the Silver Haired Legislature would be unable to advocate as effectively for senior citizens.
I am a board member of the foundation and a local banker. In my career as a banker I have assisted many elderly customers balance the checkbooks, avoid financial scams, and provide advice on financial matters. The directory of resources for seniors and caregivers has been a staple of mine to give to caregivers or seniors that may need some form of assistance in the future. The book gives all the resources an individual may need and the contact information so when a need arises it doesn't take months to find the help that is needed. We call it the Yellow Book because it is yellow and it is just like having the yellow pages for seniors with you at all times!
...in 2009 at 60 yrs and disabled...the abusive marriage that I had been in for some 12 yrs was becoming more terrifying and fearful...leaving meant loss of income, my "home"...after sometime of living in shelters and places for women from domestic abuse...I was living in my car...very fragile, vulnerable, and dealing with the post trauma of abuse...my spouse continued to stalk, undermine my relationships with family and friends, and harass me...it was a terrifying time...
Through the SWMOA, my caseworker/advocate, Brandy Gerhardt...was a God-send...
living mostly in my car and part time in my storage unit in Winter cold weather...I had no Winter Clothes, shoes, or a warm coat...my spouse had locked away from me access to these...I was given a warm but grossly grim and dirty smelling jacket by an organization...
Brandy went above and beyond taking this reeking jacket...washing it to clean and good smelling...I was given multiple gas cards...I had to drive everywhere for my basic toilet...and needs...and keeping warm with my car running...
After a time, I was able to get a part time job through Experience Works...I was taking baby steps to reclaim something of my life after domestic abuse...I was in counseling at Ozarks Counseling...
Brandy and the SWMOA helped me with funds for procuring an attorney in my divorce...and went to court with me in a very stressful emotionally and physically...hostile divorce action of my spouse...
My angel, Ms. Gerhardt...was a character witness for me with a question of my acquiring adequate housing...everything was such an emotional and physical challenge for me...I had to go to court multiple times by myself prior to getting the attorney, Brandy bolstered me up and aided me through...it was exhausting and since my family and friends were alienated from me by my spouse...it was like a life line to have Brandy Gerhardt, the folks at the Northside Sr. Center (Doling Park), Kirby, Brad, the Kitchen crew, and those Seniors...as support through it all...
My little home on wheels, my 1991 Honda station wagon...was in bad repair...unsafe...and Brandy with the SWMOA...contributed and helped me seek out funding through a grant...for the much needed repairs...
Now some three years later...I look back...it almost seems surreal what all I was dealing with...but I have come so far...and I cannot say enough how grateful that I am for all of the folks at South West Missouri Office on Aging...God Bless you all and especially, Brandy Gerhardt ...You are this older gals Heroes...Thank you with all of my heart... Shanna G. Oscarson, Springfield, Missouri November 15, 2013