The Chore Service helps senior homeowners age 60 and over, as well as homeowners with disabilities of all ages to remain safe and secure in their homes by performing minor household repairs that they can neither do themselves nor get anyone else to do. Services are provided by Chore crews of volunteer handypersons, many of whom are seniors themselves. There is no charge for Chore’s services, but clients are expected to pay for the parts necessary to complete the repair.
Services are provided for homeowners who are age 60 and over and/or physically disabled, age 18 and over. Work is performed by volunteer handymen and handywomen who are motivated by the desire to help others in our community. Chore volunteers are not licensed carpenters or electricians. They are homeowners who have the knowledge to perform simple household repairs. Each Chore crew will determine if a particular project is within their expertise.
Each Chore volunteer is scheduled for service calls one day a week and is part of a crew of one, two or three other volunteers. Each crew is assigned 4-5 service calls each day.
Prospective volunteers should be able to perform minor household repairs such as those that any able-bodied homeowner must do. Ideally, volunteers will be available on a regular basis so they can be scheduled with a regular crew.
Volunteers frequently cite the camaraderie with other volunteers and the ability to help people in need as major benefits of being involved with Chore.
Chore was established in 1977 to: 1) help the increasing numbers of elderly and/or disabled people remain safe in their own homes, and 2) help retired persons find gratifying activities by utilizing some of their life skills to help others.
The Volunteer Center’s Chore Service provides a crew of dedicated volunteers who perform minor household repairs that help the elderly and/or people with disabilities remain safe in their own homes, thereby avoiding costly and often unwanted institutionalization. Chore volunteers, the majority of whom are retirees themselves, perform household repairs that clients can neither perform themselves nor, often, find anyone else to do for them.
Chore provides service without charge; the only cost to the client is for parts necessary to complete the repair. Chore’s services include installing grab bars and railings, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors; repairing leaky faucets, replacing broken door and window locks, installing weather-stripping, fixing broken lamps and switches.
Through grants from the Bergen County Division of Senior Services and Community Development, as well as from corporations, foundations and individual donations, Chore operates three vans which are staffed by paid drivers and crews of 2-3 volunteers which are on the road every business day year round.
Chore serves Bergen County residents who are at least age sixty (60) or who are disabled of any age. Chore’s services are provided primarily to those who own their own homes. Services can be provided to apartment dwellers as long as the repairs are limited to personal items only and the task is not one that should be provided by the landlord.
Each year, Chore serves an average of 2,000 clients, completes 4,000 repairs and logs in 10,000 volunteer hours of service. Chore was featured in an issue of “This Old House” magazine, in an article about giving back to the community. In 2007, Chore was honored with the prestigious NJ Governor’s Award for Service to Senior Citizens. Chore was named a Daily Point of Light by the Points of Light Foundation, the Corporation for National and Community Service and the Knights of Columbus for its remarkable record of community service and exemplary volunteerism. New Jersey Magazine honored one of Chore’s volunteers with a "Seeds of Hope" award, recognizing charitable organizations and residents of the Garden State. Chore was recently chosen out of several hundred applicants to be featured in a documentary, "Volunteers Across America," which was aired on ABC affiliates throughout the country. Chore has also been featured on numerous TV and radio newscasts, in stories on talk shows and in print media in the Northern New Jersey area.
The Chore Service is a prime example of “best practices” in that it accomplishes the following:
Assists in improving the quality of life of older people who are living independently.
Is staffed by senior volunteers, many of whom have been with the organization for over ten years.
Has been funded by the Bergen County Division of Senior Services since its inception because it provides a vital service to older adults.
Is a model program throughout the state and the country.
Volunteer Center of Bergen County, Inc. | 64 Passaic Street | Hackensack, NJ 07601
| 201-489-9454 | www.bergenvolunteers.org