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Presbyterian Senior Living Celebrates 2024 Altruism Award Recipient

Presbyterian Senior Living Celebrates 2024 Altruism Award Recipient

Health & Aging  |  Miscellaneous  |  Thrive Wellness

Longtime Pine Run Village resident Wilma Groetzki received the 2024 Altruism Award for helping to improve the quality of life at her Doylestown community.

Sized_Altruisim Award_Presbyterian Senior LivingWilma has been volunteering with the Pine Run Village community since she moved to Independent Living in 2014. At that time, she recognized a need to create a stronger sense of community between residents in all levels of living and immediately began recruiting fellow Villagers to volunteer. Thanks to Wilma’s dedication and passion for service, Pine Run currently has 16 Villagers volunteering in the Health Care Center.

In addition to recruiting new volunteers, Wilma spends an unmeasurable amount of time outside her volunteer hours, thinking outside the box for different opportunities and ways to create a better sense of community, both within Pine Run Village and with the greater community.

Wilma has initiated several programs to bring joy to the residents and volunteers alike, including:

  • Altruism Award Call Out-1Friday Flowers – Wilma delivers a fresh flower to each room of the Health Care Center. The residents benefit from a short visit and have a flower to enjoy the rest of the week
  • “Sing Along” Group – Wilma and a group of Villagers tour through Health Care and Memory Care several times a month to sing a variety of different songs
  • Lakeview Visits – Tours with Villagers to see the campus and will visit Villagers after moving there
  • Most recently, working to develop a relationship with her local church, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Doylestown. She has been networking with church leadership and the outreach committee to identify where the various groups within the church might have something to offer. So far, she has helped coordinate a devotions and hymn sing service, an intergenerational holiday ornament program with the high school youth group and a card and cupcake delivery from a Sunday school class

In her nomination, Molly Sahner, Community Life Director at Pine Run Village, shared “When we hear Wilma’s name, bright colors begin to dance in our minds and a good word to begin describing her would be “vibrant.”

“Wilma’s kindness and compassion give her the ability to know when someone might need a calm, quiet visit where perhaps she just reads or sits quietly with someone. She is an all-around people person and will meet someone where they are at to bring joy to their day.”

Not only does Wilma’s involvement in these efforts
bring joy to her heart, it also brings joy
to all of the recipients and other Villagers
who volunteer alongside her.

While it’s clear Wilma - and her recruited volunteers - gain great joy in sharing their time with residents in the Pine Run Health Care Center and Memory Care Garden, there are many additional benefits to volunteering during retirement. As Wilma and others have noted, “They get more than they give.” Aging experts believe it is because volunteerism provides a sense of purpose, which also translates to a more physically active and engaged lifestyle.

We know volunteering helps people in other ways:

  • Make new friends
  • Learn new skills
  • Gain confidence
  • Socialize with others
  • Avoid feeling lonely

A study of participants in the AARP Experience Corps found that volunteers showed improvements in both physical and mental health along with an apparent delay in the onset of problems related to aging. Specifically, it found volunteers experienced:

  • Fewer limitations in their physical abilities
  • A slower decline in health because of aging
  • A reduced risk of depression
  • Increased physical activity
  • A larger number of friends
  • A feeling of optimism about life
  • Better memory capacity

Congratulation to Wilma for this honor and to the other nominees for the Altruism Award from across Pennsylvania Senior Living’s communities:

  • Donna Howley, Cathedral Village
  • Barbara “Bobbie” Hess, Glen Meadows
  • Todd Johnson, Green Ridge Village
  • Mike Vandenberg, Kirkland Village
  • Fay Propst, The Long Community
  • Charlie Clayton, Presbyterian Home
  • Lloyd Forshey, Presbyterian Village
  • Quincy Care Auxiliary, Quincy Village
  • Leora Streams, St. Andrew’s Village
  • Annette Pennington, Ware Presbyterian Village
  • Thrift Shop Team, Westminster Village
  • Diana Chase, Westminster Woods


About Alicia Fenstermacher

Alicia Fenstermacher has been working in Aging Services for over 26 years, 19 years of which have been with PSL. As the Vice President of Purposeful Living, Alicia is responsible for supporting successful aging, quality of life, and purposeful living initiatives such as Wellness, Customer Satisfaction, Memory Care, Social Work Services, Culture Change, and Community Life. She is a licensed Social Worker, licensed Nursing Home Administrator, and licensed Personal Care Home Administrator. Alicia lives in the Lehigh Valley with her husband Jeff, son Mattias, stepson Maverick, and two dogs named Freddie Mercury and Bebe’ Le Strange. Passionate about the importance of relationships and individual empowerment, Alicia is all about embracing our own “unique-us.”