Submitted by mbrodbeck on

AmeriCorps Seniors Volunteer is in the Right Place to Save a Life

Blue Grass Community Action Partnership - Senior Companion Program

Jewel Brown serves as an AmeriCorps Seniors volunteer with the Blue Grass Community Action Partnership, a quality-of-life program serving nine counties across Kentucky. As a senior companion, Jewel aids at-risk older adults who need extra support to maintain their independent status and to remain in their homes. Over the last four years, she has visited seniors in their homes for 15 hours each week.

This winter, Jewel had a planned visited with one of her seniors. But when they did not answer their door, Jewel became concerned and asked a facility security guard for access. They found the senior in severe distress. Jewel and the security guard contacted local paramedics and then Jewel followed them to the hospital. The senior suffered a potentially fatal heart attack, and according to the medical staff, Jewel saved the senior's life. If she had not arrived when she did, and followed her instincts, the senior would not have survived. Thankfully, the senior recovered, and Jewel continues her volunteer efforts as a senior companion—ensuring more members of her community can stay, safely, in their homes.

"I believe that you can never do too much for someone or care too much,” Jewel said. “I don't want excessive recognition for my actions. Instead, I want people to know I care, and I will do what I can to ensure their safety and health.”