What is the Neighbor Network?
The Neighbor Network matches volunteers with seniors to call in New York City during the COVID-19 crisis. These regular calls help to fight social isolation, connect older New Yorkers with the resources they need, and build relationships that will bring joy and comfort to seniors and volunteers alike.
The Neighbor Network is built on a partnership between Greenwich House, Heights & Hills, the New York Civic Engagement Table and the Office of NYC Council Member Brad Lander.
In times of crisis, New Yorkers look out for each other. As coronavirus keeps older adults home-bound for months on end, regular calls through the neighbor network help to connect people to support, to prevent social isolation from gnawing deeper, to build relationships that sustain us through this challenging time, and to bring a little joy into lonely days on both sides of the phone line.
For over 100 years Greenwich House has advanced a mission of building and supporting community to address the needs of our time, whatever they may be. Our legacy spans two world wars, the world’s last global flu pandemic, the Aids crisis of the 1980s, economic calamity and more, and we’re proud to join this great group of partners to support our neighbors in need during this global and local health crisis.
Because older adults face a higher health risk due to COVID-19, these neighbors are likely to face many more months of physical isolation and the challenges that come with it – difficulty accessing food, medicine and mental health services, a lack of reliable information, and separation from friends and family.
By volunteering to regularly make calls to seniors during this crisis, you can help connect your neighbors to the resources they need while building meaningful relationships.
What happens if I sign up?
–Attend a short online video training with other volunteers covering how to make calls, tips for your conversations, and when and how to reach out for help
–If you want to participate, you’ll begin by making several short introductory calls to seniors until you connect with 1-3 older adults who want to receive ongoing calls – the number of seniors and the timing of the calls is up to you!
–Track your progress, and build relationships with your senior neighbors by calling them twice a week for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis
–The Neighbor Network team will will provide regular help with conversation topics and solve any issues that come up