Monday, July 20, 2015
St. John the Baptist Parish - Parish President Natalie Robottom joined Presidents Timmy Roussel and V.J. St. Pierre and over 300 seniors from the River Parishes at the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) Luncheon. The 38th Annual Luncheon was held in St. John Parish on Thursday, July 16 at REGALA Gymnasium in Reserve.
Once a year, the RSVP sponsors a recognition event for seniors to acknowledge their volunteer efforts. Awards were presented to volunteers with five to twenty-five years of service. Among the longest serving St. John volunteers were Shirley Montz, Inez Blank, Jeanette Butler and Lorita Savoie who were recognized for 20 plus years of volunteer service. Terry Labat and Betty Vicknair were honored for top hours. St. John Parish clocked in a total of 31,133 volunteer hours valued at $718,238.31 for 2014.
Overall, RSVP recorded 617 volunteers providing 80,165 hours of service valued at $1,849,408.86. “This is a very important program and one that allows our retirees and seniors to assist their community. They are role models for our younger generations setting the example for volunteerism and demonstrating that time given to hep others and the community is time well spent,” said Parish President Natalie Robottom.
In addition to the presentation of awards, volunteers also reveled in music, dancing, socializing, and entertainment by the “Oldies but Goodies Dance & Social Club.” “I feel the obligation to give back to a city that has given so much to me and my family,” said RSVP volunteer and LaPlace native, Mitchel Elfer. “When someone needs something, I am there, I don’t think twice.”
The purpose of the River Parishes RSVP is to link adults from St. James, St. Charles and St. John Parishes ages 55 and over to meaningful volunteerism and to provide opportunities to pursue their interests and use their skills to help meet community needs. Volunteers serve in a diverse range of nonprofit organizations, public agencies, and faith-based groups. Each volunteer contributes an average of four hours per week to remain an active RSVP member. “This year’s event was a huge success,” said RSVP Director, Michelle Higgins. “The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program of the River Parishes is making a difference each and every day in our community. Also a huge thank you to St. John parish staff and especially the staff at REGALA Gym for the great venue and their assistance,” she added.
For more information on how to get involved with the RSVP program, call 985-783-8907.