THE LOCAL NEWS OF THE MADISON VALLEY, RUBY VALLEY AND SURROUNDING AREAS

Volunteer Spotlight

Ronna Devereaux: Senior Companion

 

“I’m just so thankful that I got the opportunity to be a senior companion,” said Ronna Devereaux. “It’s just a wonderful program to keep people in their homes and make sure their needs are met, and to be able to visit with them and get to know them.”

Devereaux has been with the Senior Companions Program for 14 years. “Almost 15,” she added coyly. The program is an affiliate with the National and Community Service Corporation, which hosts programs such as AmeriCorps and the Social Innovation Fund. Devereaux started with the program as a way of getting to know her new community. “I had just moved here and was trying to get to know people and saw an ad on the bulletin board at the courthouse for a senior companion,” she said. After contacting the program, she was quick to get involved with her clients in both Sheridan and Twin Bridges. “They’re technically clients, but they really are more of a companion, just as much for me as for them.” 

Devereaux has four companions she sees every Monday and Friday – from grocery lists to driving companions to doctor’s appointments or to volunteer duties at the local thrift shop, she puts in long days. “It’s so worth it,” she said. “One, I’m 75 and this gets me up and gets me going every day. A person could just retire and lose interest in getting out.” But that’s not Devereaux, who said she gets more than she gives. “I love just being with them, hearing what they have to say, and I have learned so much about the history of this area over the last 14 years; I’ve met people through my companions.” 

Devereaux, a mother, grandmother and a senior companion, said a program such as the SCP is vital to areas like the Ruby Valley, but also Montana in general. “I really believe this is something we need in Montana,” she said. “There are a lot of retirees, especially in the area, and it’s just a good thing. It really has been a wonderful experience.” 

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The Madisonian

65 N. MT Hwy 287
Ennis, MT 59729
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