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Jan/Feb 2017

RSVP Volunteer Opportunity: Trempealeau County Tax Assistance For over 20 years a group of dedicated volunteers have been preparing individual tax returns in rural Trempealeau County. The Trempealeau County AARP Tax Assistance RSVP volunteer opportunity makes it possible for low to moderate income households, elderly and/or disabled clients to get their taxes completed at no cost to them. Many individuals who would otherwise need assistance would not have the option to file their taxes, especially in a rural area. The service offers electronic filing of federal and state income taxes, plus Homestead Credit applications for Trempealeau County residents. To accommodate the individuals of several communities that make up Trempealeau County, RSVP volunteers travel to five different sites from February to early April. The RSVP volunteers travel between Galesville and Strum on Mondays, Whitehall and Osseo on Wednesdays, and Ettrick on Thursdays between 9am and 1pm during the Pictured (from left): Deborah Deutscher, Craig Carlson, tax season. In 2016, Trempealeau County Lorna Kolterman, Barb Meinke, and Sheree Nelson. Tax Aide volunteers were able to file taxes for 248 households for the 2015 filing year. We are expecting to make the same or more impact in 2017. When Craig Carlson, AARP tax consultant and RSVP volunteer heard about the opportunity to help individuals file their income taxes, he signed up as a volunteer and the rest is history. Craig states that he has always enjoyed doing his own taxes and he feels great helping others. Craig has a Master’s Degree and worked previously in Economic Development before becoming an RSVP volunteer. Craig shares that the individuals receiving tax assistance are very grateful. He adds that there is a training program offering plenty of help and even includes an orientation for those who are interested in becoming a tax assistance volunteer. Deborah Deutscher is currently on her third year as an RSVP tax assistance volunteer. Deborah retired four years ago as a Postmaster. She has a background in computers and accounting acquired from CVTC in Eau Claire. She enjoys working with numbers, so when she heard of this opportunity, she was hoping to be of value. Continued on Page 4


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FOR YOUR INFORMATION

RSVP Contact Information

Welcome New Volunteers!!

Western Dairyland EOC Inc. is a private, nonprofit community action agency established in 1966 for the purpose of alleviating poverty-related conditions and assisting low-income families to achieve their economic self-reliance. We welcome your comments & suggestions about the Western Dairyland RSVP program.

Carol Hanson William Kulas Patrick Rice Kathy Kochenderfer

Address: Western Dairyland EOC Inc. RSVP Program 23122 Whitehall Road Independence, WI 54747 Phone: 715-985-2391 ext. 1205 Office hours: Monday - Friday from 8 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. Website: www.westerndairyland.org Email Address: cheryl.padula@wdeoc.org

SITE SUPERVISORS: Please let our office know if there is a volunteer opportunity at your site. We would be happy to help you find a volunteer (whether short or long-term) to assist and/or put the opportunity in our upcoming RSVP newsletter.

Have You Moved? We want to hear from you! The RSVP Program has had the pleasure of working with many wonderful volunteers and watching the impact each person has made in their own community through volunteerism. We ask that you please help the RSVP office stay updated. Are you still volunteering? Perhaps you are not feeling well or maybe you have been physically unable to volunteer due to an illness or surgery? We also know summers are busy and you may be enjoying more time with your family which may result in being too busy to volunteer at this time. Whatever the reason, we would really like to hear from you. To insure that you receive RSVP volunteer recognition and to assist you with future RSVP volunteer opportunities, we ask that you be sure to record all volunteer hours at your volunteer work site. Feel free to contact us at anytime; we welcome your input, concerns and volunteer stories.

Call us at 1-800-782-1063 ext. 1205 or 1232. We look forward to hearing from you!


RSVP PROGRAM-SNAPSHOT OF SERVICE

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Each year RSVP volunteers give their time and share their talents, making each community they serve a better place to live. Below is a snapshot of several areas of service and the impact each RSVP volunteer made in their communities last year. Great job volunteers!

Volunteer Activity in 2016 Number of individuals receiving Emergency Food Assistance in Buffalo, Eau Claire, Jackson, and Trempealeau coun"es.

Impact

Hours Served

9,250

8,784

Number of volunteer hours transpor"ng seniors to medical appointments in Buffalo, Jackson, and Trempealeau coun"es.

10,749

Number of seniors or disabled individuals who received independent living services in Trempealeau county.

29

2,291.75

Number of unduplicated Veterans in Trempealeau county that received transporta"on to the VA Hospital in Tomah mul"ple "mes each month.

25

603

Number of students receiving tutoring or one-on-one classroom assistance in Buffalo, Eau Claire and Trempealeau coun"es.

408

3,433

Pounds of clothing and other items recycled through RSVP’s partnering resale shops in Buffalo and Trempealeau coun"es.

28,718

4,413

Number of tax returns filed for Trempealeau county residents by RSVP volunteers.

248

919.5

Number of Weekend Food Assistance bags distributed in Trempealeau County. Number of unduplicated children who received a Birthday Box wrapped & filled by RSVP volunteers .

3,541 340 Bags 255

224

DO YOU KNOW SOMEONE WHO WOULD BENEFIT FROM BECOMING AN RSVP VOLUNTEER? Existing RSVP volunteers make our best recruits! Feel free to pass this newsletter on to someone 55+ that you think would be a great match for the RSVP Program. We have a variety of opportunities available. Make sure to share what being an RSVP volunteer means to YOU!


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Tax Assistance continued... Receiving specialized training and being continuously informed of tax changes and program updates is also a plus. Deborah shares that each of the RSVP volunteers are knowledgeable and each client is appreciative of the services they receive. Barb Meinke graduated from Winona State with a degree in Business and Sociology. She worked for over forty years at TRW in Winona as a Customer Service Manager. About a month after retiring Barb shared that she had a difficult time adjusting to retirement. She knew that she had to find something to keep her mind active and allowed her the ability to interact with people. About a month after retiring, she heard about becoming a volunteer tax assistant and was interested. Barb did not have any prior tax experience but enjoyed helping people so she thought she would give it a try. That was ten years ago! She finds it has been a very challenging but rewarding experience. Barb states that their current group of volunteers is diversified; they work very well together. She looks forward to more volunteers joining their team. Lorna Kolterman has been an RSVP volunteer for nine years and has a background in tax preparation. Sheree Nelson has been an RSVP volunteer for two years. Prior to volunteering, Sheree was a Certified Public Accountant. Although there are only five tax assistance volunteers, they divide up the responsibilities, working together as a team. Deb and Craig are in charge of intake and do some tax preparation, Lorna and Barb file taxes, and Sheree is a ‘Quality Reviewer’, reviewing taxes to ensure accuracy prior to E-filing. Individuals that have had their taxes prepared by this great group of volunteers are thankful that this important service is available to them locally. Many of the individuals receiving tax assistance are “repeat” clients, counting on this service in order to file their income taxes, receive guidance, and file for the Homestead Credit, especially beneficial for low income households. One low income client recently stated that she was retired, living on a fixed income. She said that she doesn’t have to file taxes because her income is too low but relies on the volunteers to help her file for the Homestead Credit. She said that receiving this allows her to catch up on extra expenses during the winter months. Being a tax volunteer is personally satisfying. Professional training is provided to each potential volunteer by AARP. If you are looking for something impactful to keep you active over winter months, this is the perfect opportunity for you, only lasting January - April. Please contact our office if you are interested in this Trempealeau County volunteer opportunity. If you live in Jackson County, we are also recruiting volunteers in your area for this volunteer opportunity.

Independent, Assisted Living and Memory Care

www.thehomeplaceof.com 715-429-1007 For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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Many RSVP volunteers are familiar with the two logos at right. Either because you see them consistently in our RSVP newsletter or because you follow major volunteer news. However, if you are not familiar with either of these logos, you will find the information on this page useful. If you are familiar with CNCS, Senior Corps, and RSVP, perhaps you can pass this information on to another prospective volunteer. It is definitely something to be excited about! About CNCS (Corporation for National & Community Service) - The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that helps millions of Americans improve the lives of their fellow citizens through service. Working hand in hand with local partners, they tap the ingenuity and can-do spirit of the American people to tackle some of the most pressing challenges facing our nation. They are AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, the Social Innovation Fund, the Volunteer Generation Fund, and more. CNCS serves, we builds, and makes an impact that changes lives and communities. Serving at more than 50,000 locations across the country, CNCS delivers result-driven service where it’s needed most by: · Strengthening education from pre-school on up. Foster Grandparents spark a love of learning in kids and AmeriCorps members keep students on track to graduate and succeed. · Helping communities recover and rebuild from natural disasters, leading efforts to preserve our nation’s natural resources in our parks and public lands. · Standing behind our veterans and military families by supporting families during deployment, providing assistance to help our soldiers transition into the workforce, or get an education after coming home. · Improving health by supporting independent living for seniors, reducing childhood obesity, preventing disease, and helping families gain access to health care. · Building economic opportunity for individuals and communities by helping more Americans graduate, pursue higher education, gain career skills, and find employment. Our nation’s strength comes from our people. America has always been at its best when citizens together, joined in common purpose. CNCS helps focus this energy on local challenges to make a difference in the lives of millions of Americans every day. Every RSVP volunteer is a part of this impact!

Senior Corps programs tap the skills and experience of more than 270,000 older Americans to meet pressing community needs.

* See more at: https://goo.gl/Jwz85L

Call LPi today for advertising info (800) 950-9952

For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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Volunteer Drivers (Trempealeau & Jackson County)- Drivers are needed to provide safe & reliable transportation for seniors and/or clients who have no other means of getting to medical appointments. Volunteers are reimbursed for mileage. Trempealeau County Community Cupboard (Strum)- Volunteers are needed to distribute food to participants. Volunteers are also needed to register participants, stock shelves and to help unload the truck. Distribution occurs on the 3rd Saturday of each month from 2-5 pm. Call today to get started with this great volunteer opportunity! Cents & Sensibility Thrift Store (Independence)- Looking for a volunteer opportunity that offers a variety of tasks? The Cents & Sensibility Thrift Store is seeking volunteers to assist processing donations, steaming clothing to be put on the clothing racks, laundering items, as well as basic organizing. Advisory Council (Eau Claire)- If you are looking for a volunteer opportunity enabling you to get more involved in your county and you like to provide ideas & feedback, the RSVP Advisory Council has a lot to offer! Please call if you would like more information regarding this opportunity. RSVP Volunteer Caregiver Project (Trempealeau County)If you would like a flexible volunteer opportunity, either short or long term and have an hour or more to give, this opportunity is perfect for you! Get rewarded by helping older adults in Trempealeau County with practical assistance. As an RSVP volunteer caregiver, you are able to choose what works for you.

If you are interested in any of the featured volunteer opportunities listed above, or if you would like to hear about some of our other partnering sites or additional volunteer placements, please give us a call at 715-985-2391 Ext. 1205 “Find a need and fill it.” Ruth Stafford Peale

Contact Matt Franszczak to place an ad today! MFranszczak@4LPi.com or (800) 950-9952 x2588

Serving Jackson & Surrounding Counties Locally Owned & Operated

715-963-ASAP (2727) For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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Tips for staying socially engaged as you age: Nurture your social network. Make an effort to maintain your close personal relationships with family members, friends, church members, neighbors, and other important people in your life. Even if they’re not close by, you can still keep in touch by e-mail or Facebook. Play "mind" games. Regularly doing crossword puzzles and playing chess and other intellectually stimulating games keeps your mind active and, if you play with others, helps you stay socially connected to your peers. Scientists believe that both your body and your mind follow the principle "use it or lose it." So think of these games as fun ways to exercise your brain. Join a club. Contact your local senior center and ask around to see if there are any clubs in your area you would be interested in becoming a part of. Attending regular book club, garden club, or art club meetings is a great way to meet new people and establish rewarding relationships with people who have similar interests. Go back to work. Many people experience stress after they retire, feeling they have lost part of their identity. If you are longing to work again, consider taking a part-time job, which can help keep your mind stimulated and give you a sense of greater contribution. Volunteer in your community. If you want to have a feeling of purpose or contribute to a greater cause, find a way to volunteer in your community. Recent studies show that older individuals who volunteer have a reduced risk of death compared to their counterparts who do not. Offer family assistance. If you have grandchildren or other young family members you would like to see more of, offer to babysit regularly. Chasing around after children is a great way to keep you physically active and improve your sense of well-being. It’s not uncommon for older people to become socially and intellectually withdrawn. But if you make an effort to stay engaged, you will find more joy and satisfaction in life — and there is a good chance you will stay healthier as you age. * See more at: https://goo.gl/sNyWp8

Serving the River Regions of Western Wisconsin Since 1871 36396 Main St., Whitehall, WI 54773

715-538-2123 www.rivervalleymutual.com

For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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1. Exercise: Manage stress without adding to your financial woes. A 20-minute walk or jog around your block can yield up to 12 hours of improved mood. The main thing is to find a physical activity that you enjoy, whether it’s dancing or fly fishing. 2. Socialize: Spending time with friends and family who give you a sense of belonging, purpose, & fun may provide all the stress relief you need. 3. Write: Dedicating a period of time every day to write about a situation that is bother you may reduce tension & give you stress relief for a day. Keeping a journal can also help you solve problems or find positive angles amongst the stressors.

4. Laugh: Laughter really is the best medicine. It is proven to lower tension, & at the same time, improves blood flow and the health of your heart. 5. Take Care of Yourself: When tension spikes, it can be tempting to put yourself last— but prioritizing healthy eating, physical activity, relationships, & sleep is necessary if you want to avoid making stress worse. 6. Get Some Fresh Air: If you are cooped up inside all day, take a few minutes to get outside and see the

sun. A little time in the great outdoors can improve your mood & help you relax. 7. Be Kind to Yourself: Think about positive affirmations daily Thinking negative only makes you feel bad & will increase stress. 8. Meditate: Practice deep breathing & meditation exercises daily, & when you feel tensions rising. 9. Be Thankful: Showing thanks for your family, friends & loved ones as well as being thankful for the positive aspects of your life has a calming affect. It also makes others feel good! 10. Make a Change: Sometimes the best way to obtain stress relief is to remove your source of tension. *See more at: h!ps://goo.gl/5sXyW

COMPLIMENTS OF:

Affordable Alternative to Larger Tax Services

ACTION Fran’s Heating & Air Conditioning

TAX

SERVICE 1122 Birch St., Eau Claire 715-832-1534 New Client Discount $10

For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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St. Patrick's Day is one of the most anticipated Irish holidays. What you probably don't know is that the man responsible for it was not Irish. According to folklore, Patrick was born somewhere along the West coast of Britain in 385 AD. He was kidnapped when he was 16 and sold to an Irish sheep farmer. The young boy escaped at the age of 22 and made his way back to Britain, where he spent 12 years in a monastery. In his mid-thirties, he decided to head back to Ireland this time, as a missionary. According to historians, Patrick died there on March 17th, 461 AD. Over the next few centuries tales of his achievements that included driving out the snakes of Ireland into the sea to their destruction, transformed him into a legendary figure. By the 7th century, Patrick was designated primary patron saint of Ireland. While a Saint Patrick's feast has been a tradition in Europe since the 9th century, it was not until March 17th, 1732, that the first parade was staged. Also, it was not in Ireland but in Boston, to allow Irish soldiers serving in American colonies to reconnect with their country. New York adopted the tradition in 1867 and then Ireland in 1931. By the mid-1990's St. Patrick's Day had become so popular even with people that were not of Irish descent, that the government of Ireland decided to use the holiday to promote tourism. This decision has transformed the one day event into a week-long celebration in Ireland. Though green is now the color of choice, this was not the case in the 1780's when the Order of St. Patrick was established. Their preferred color was blue. In the 1790's green became tied to Irish nationalism and by the 19th and 20th centuries also associated with St. Patrick's Day. No St. Patrick's Day celebration is complete without corned beef and cabbage. However this is not an Irish tradition but an American one that began from early Irish settlers, who could afford meat only once a week. Since beef was cheap, it became the meat of choice. Over the years, this "special meal" became associated with the equally special St. Patrick's Day and the tradition was born. In Ireland, the preferred meat of choice is still bacon or lamb. The four-leaf clover happens to be a genuine Irish tradition that stems from the belief that a four-leaf clover represents hope, faith, love and happiness. Unfortunately, since only one in 10,000 clovers has the fourth leaf, they are not easy to find. According to Irish mythology, the leprechaun is a tiny fairy that knows the location of a pot of gold. However to get to the treasure, one has to find, catch and even threaten the sneaky little guy. Though they have proved elusive, leprechauns are highly sought after every St. Patrick's Day. * See more at: https://goo.gl/EAxY9J

For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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The definition of healthy eating changes a little as you age. As you grow older, your metabolism slows down, so you need fewer calories than before. Your body also needs more of certain nutrients. That means it’s more important than ever to choose foods that give you the best nutritional value. The recipe below includes a lot of green vegetables….Tasty and great for spring! *See more at: https://goo.gl/oHrOKm

Pasta Primavera

Ingredients: - 1 Bunch Fresh Basil - 3 C. Chicken Broth - 1/2 C. Olive Oil - 2 Cloves Garlic - 2 Tbsp. Olive Oil - 2 Pinches of salt - 2 Zucchinis, diced - 1 Pound Fettuccine Pasta

- 1/2 C. Shelled English Peas - 1 C. Chopped Sugar Snap Peas - 1 Bunch Green Onions, chopped - 2 Jalepeño Peppers, Seeded/Diced - 1/2 C. Grated Parmesan Cheese, or as needed - 1 Bunch Asparagus (Stalks diced, tips left whole) - 1 Lg. Leek (White/Light Green Parts Only, Chopped)

Directions: 1. Fill a large pot with lightly salted water. Bring to a rolling boil. Hold basil bunch by the stems, dip basil leaves in boiling water until bright green, about 2 seconds. Immediately immerse basil in ice water for several minutes until cold to stop the cooking process. Once the basil is cold, drain well. Remove basil leaves from stems and discard stems. 2. Blend basil leaves, 1 cup chicken broth, 1/2 cup olive oil, and garlic together in a blender until smooth. 3. Stir fettuccine into the same pot of boiling water, bring back to a boil, and cook pasta over medium heat until cooked through but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Drain. 4. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook and stir leek and green onion in hot oil until softened, about 5 minutes. Add jalapeno and salt; cook and stir until jalapeno is soft, about 5 minutes. 5. Increase heat to medium-high. Stir 2 cups chicken broth, zucchini, sugar snap peas, and English peas into jalapeno mixture; bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Add asparagus and continue cooking until asparagus is soft, about 3 minutes more. 6. Pour 1/4 cup basil-garlic mixture into zucchini mixture and cook. Stir until heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Place pasta in a large bowl; pour zucchini mixture over pasta. Pour remaining basil-garlic mixture over the zucchini mixture. Spread Parmesan cheese over the top. Toss mixture briefly to combine and tightly wrap bowl with aluminum foil. Let stand until pasta and vegetables soak up most of the juices and oil, about 5 minutes. Toss again. *See More at: https://goo.gl/w4tsvI

For ad info. call 1-800-950-9952 • www.4lpi.com

Western Dairyland, Independence, WI.

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1. A man stands on one side of a river, his dog on the other. The man calls his dog, who immediately crosses the river without getting wet and without using a bridge or a boat. How did the dog do it? 2. A sundial has the fewest moving parts of any timepiece. Which has the most? 3. What is unusual about the following words: revive, banana, grammar, voodoo, assess, potato, dresser, uneven? 4. What makes this number unique -- 8,549,176,320? 5. Put a coin into an empty bottle and insert a cork into the neck. How can you remove the coin without removing the cork or breaking the bottle? 6. Two boxers are in a match scheduled for 12 rounds. (Pure boxing only - no kicking, UFC takedowns, or anything else). One of the boxers gets knocked out after only six rounds, yet no man throws a punch. How is this possible? 7. In 1990, a person is 15 years old. In 1995, that same person is 10 years old. How can this be? 8. A man takes his car to a hotel. Upon reaching the hotel, he is immediately declared bankrupt. Why? 9. What do these words have in common: polish, job, herb? 10. You’re standing in a hallway with three light switches on the wall, each of which turns on a different lamp inside a closed room. You can’t see inside the room, and you can’t open the door except to enter the room. You can enter the room only once, and when you do, all the lamps must be turned off. How can you tell which switch turns on which lamp? *See more at: https://goo.gl/VkFMWa DID YOU KNOW? When it comes to the brain, the one factor we often neglect is mental stimulation. We are creatures of habit and tend to engage in the same activities and behavior patterns. In fact, the brain "prefers" novelty and unexpected events. When we mentally challenge ourselves on a regular basis, we can maintain good intellectual potential as well as reduce our risk for agerelated memory loss. Challenge yourself with our brain games, scientifically developed to give your mind a workout. From Mah Jongg to Sudoku, you won't know which gave is your favorite until you try them all. *See more at: https://goo.gl/LhYNCr Answer Key: 1. The river was frozen. 2. An hourglass, with thousands of grains of sand.3. Take the first letter of each word and place it at the end. It will spell the same word backwards.4. It contains each number, zero through nine, in alphabetical order.5. Push the cork down into the bottle. Then shake the coin out.6. Both boxers are female.7. The person was born in 2005 B.C.8. The man is playing Monopoly. He lands on a property with a hotel and doesn’t have enough money to pay the rent.9. All three words are pronounced differently when the first letter is capitalized.10. Turn on the right switch and leave it on for two minutes. After two minutes, turn on the middle switch and leave it on for one minute. When that minute is up, turn off both switches and enter the room. One light bulb will be hot (1st switch) and one will be warm (2nd switch). The cold bulb will correspond to the switch you didn’t turn on.


NON PROFIT ORG U.S. POSTAGE

RSVP Volunteer Office 23122 Whitehall Road PO Box 125 Independence, WI 54747

PAID EAU CLAIRE WI PERMIT NO. 2000

Return Service Requested

Western Dairyland’s RSVP program serves Buffalo, Eau Claire, Jackson and Trempealeau counties.

WE LISTEN, WE ACT, WE CARE

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Jan Feb 2017 RSVP Newsletter  

Jan Feb 2017 RSVP Newsletter  

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