"Recycling" Books to Promote and Support Successful Aging

For 24 years older adult volunteers have conducted a used book sale to raise funds to support outreach programs offered by the Shepherd's Center of Greater Winston-Salem. Currently over 125 older adult volunteers organize and conduct the 3-day sale which had grown to be one of the largest sales in our area of the state. The sale, and related activities associated with collecting, processing and storing the donated books, raises nearly $60,000 per year.

The book sale is a win-win situation for our community. Books and other media are donated from sources throughout the community (individuals, schools, libraries, congregations, businesses, etc.) and the revenue from the sale supports the services which are offered to promote and support successful aging for thousands of older adults in our community.

Services offered by the Shepherd's Center include 1) the Faith In Action Care Program which provides medical and grocery transportation, minor home repairs as well as visitation and respite care; 2) Senior Center Program which offers health and wellness, life long learning and enrichment opportunities for active older adults and 3) the Congregational Nurse and Health Ministry Program which coordinates a program of training and networking for volunteer nurses serving area congregations. In 2010, over 12,000 individuals were served through these program areas adding to their quality of life, independence and well being. These services are coordinated by staff of the center; however, the volunteers who provide the services are older adult volunteers with an average age of 72.