BELFAST — Aging Well in Waldo County, an organization formed in 2016 to mobilize the community to address the needs of our aging population, is addressing the social isolation felt by many seniors with several initiatives, including Waldo Calling, a volunteer program that began at the start of the pandemic in 2020.

Over 40 volunteers were enlisted to call all Waldo County residents, age 70 and over, to check in and offer conversation and assistance. Most of those who were called reported that their needs were being met by family and friends, but others needed information (at the beginning of the pandemic: where to buy masks; which grocery stores delivered) and assistance, and a number accepted the offer of weekly phone calls “just to chat.”

Volunteers are still checking in with these seniors and report that several friendships have been formed.

Aging Well in Waldo County asks that anyone who might know of a homebound senior who could benefit from this program, or anyone who would like to volunteer, call one or two seniors on a regular basis, email Waldo Calling Coordinator Deborah Shepherd, debkshep@gmail.com.