“It means a lot to me”: Two decades of volunteering at the Older Adult Center 

A white-haired woman with a warm smile

When you come to lunch at our Lincoln Square Neighborhood Center between Tuesday and Friday, Rosa Cruz will be there to check you in—a warm, welcoming face for old and new members alike. For Director Viktoriia Zakhary, it feels like she’s always been there. 

“When I started in this role, Rosa showed me how everything worked!” she said with a laugh. “She taught me the job.” 

Cruz demurs modestly—”Maybe I gave her a hint,” she said, smiling—but she can’t deny she’s been a volunteer in almost every available role for two decades. “I’ve helped in many ways,” she said. “I used to visit sick people, I used to cook in the kitchen, and other things too.”  

Rosa has also been an enthusiastic member of the programs and classes, from visiting the social workers to taking part in yoga and dance. One thing she’s especially benefited from is our technology classes, which take place in a fully equipped computer lab.  

“I learned a lot here,” she said, noting that being able to use Facebook and Facetime have been game-changers. “I have some friends that I keep in touch with on Facebook, and I keep in touch with my family. I can still see them even though they’re far away. I like that.” 

While Cruz has given a lot to the Older Adult Center, she says she’s gotten a lot out of it too. 

“It really means a lot to me,” she said. “I like to help. It’s good for my health, for my brain, and I love to do it.”