Shepherd Center’s services reach record levels

Transportation volunteer Jerry Hinson helps Mel into his doctor’s office.

Shepherd Center’s services reach record levels
April 27
08:21 2023

In 2022 the Shepherd’s Center achieved record levels of services in all areas. Through the dedication of over 300 volunteers and a dedicated staff, more older adults in our community benefited from the wide variety of services offered.

Transportation Services

We were successful in responding to a record 15,584 one-way transportation requests during the year. Participant surveys indicated that 90% of those served would have missed appointments had it not been for the transportation services we provided. Jerry Hinson is one of the generous transportation volunteers and has been volunteering with us since January 2022. Fifteen years ago, he was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, went under Hospice care, and was not expected to live. Miraculously, he recovered. Jerry sees volunteering to help others as a way to express gratitude for life. He loves getting to meet different people.

One of the clients Jerry has served is Mel. Mel retired from Old Salem where he shared his vast knowledge of local African American history. He says he would not be able to get to his many medical appointments were it not for the Shepherd’s Center. He has found that many of the Shepherd’s Center volunteers have had personal life experiences that enable them to be especially understanding and compassionate and he appreciates being treated with empathy and respect.

Surveys show that 93% of respondents said that their need for medical transportation was met and 90% reported that the transportation services we provide had helped them to be healthier, while 80% of participants surveyed said that the transportation program has allowed them to remain in their home longer than they would have been able to without our services.

Minor Home Repair Services

2022 also saw a record number of requests for minor home repairs. A record 857 requests were responded to, with 89% of those served reporting that their repair needs were met, 74% stated the repair program makes them feel safer in their homes, and 68% stated the services are allowing them to remain in their homes longer. Also 84% indicated that they could not have paid for the repair services. Gwendolyn Montgomery, a home repair client, said, “I have been using The Shepherd Center to perform plumbing repairs and other household repairs in my home. If I had to pay for outside repairs, it would probably be in the hundreds of dollars. I am so grateful for their services. As a senior citizen, I had The Shepherd Center install grab bars in my shower and bathtub, which has helped me for safety. I can honestly say The Shepherd Center has been a Godsend. The volunteers are always nice, considerate, and professional. Without their services, I don’t know what I would do.”

Many of the Home Repair Services’ volunteers are retired, but others, like Eric Reuter, work full time. Erick is a physician’s assistant, but he still finds time on his off days to assist older adults with minor repairs. With the requests increasing, generous volunteers like Eric perform a service that enables older adults to remain safely in their homes.

The demand for home repairs increased during COVID. While our volunteers were “sidelined” for indoor repairs, we were able to subcontract many of these repairs to reputable contractors in the community. Since mid-2021, our skilled minor repair volunteers have returned and are responding to over 90% of all requests.

Minor home repairs has been identified as a significant need for older adults in our community and The Shepherd’s Center is one of a very few organizations providing the services throughout the county. 

A survey by Age-Friendly Forsyth found that transportation and home repairs were among the top priorities of those surveyed.

Vital Living Program

The Vital Living Program offered a record of over 55 health and wellness activities, as well as numerous opportunities for social interaction, lifelong learning and support in 2022. Activities include Tai Chi, Yoga, warm water exercise, bridge, chess, discussion groups, drumming and The Shepherd Center Singers choral group. A record 3,822 participants took advantage of the activities offered and attendance in all activities exceeded 42,000!

Also included in the program offerings is the Medicare counseling and educational offerings through the Seniors Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP). Over 1,100 beneficiaries were served during the year with services provided by trained volunteer counselors.

All of our programs and services are dependent upon the hundreds of volunteers who are serving others in the community with the investment of their generous time, compassion and skills. If you would like to explore the various programs we offer, or consider volunteering your time and talents, visit


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