We wrote about Our Moment Café back in March when they received an award for being The Villages’ Outstanding Volunteer Organization. Since then, Joan Bender and Dick Boyden have been very busy earning more awards and growing Our Moment Café (OMC).
One of the biggest milestones for Our Moment Café happened earlier this year when they obtained their non-profit status from the IRS. As a 501 (c)(3) charitable organization OMC can now except donations. Another milestone was the development of a website. This year OMC met 23 times at their two Cafes in Chula Vista and Bacall. They had 1,840 people participate in 2022. Also, this year OMC formed a board of directors, acquired corporate sponsors such as Blue Cross and AVIV Clinics, increased participation by 300%, and addressed several community groups. They received much-deserved awards and accolades in 2022. In addition to the VHA’s Outstanding Volunteer Organization of the Year Award, OMC also received the Gold Seal of Transparency from Guidestar and an acknowledgement from Growing Bolder, who featured OMC in a video.
For the past four years Our Moment Café has focused on socialization and participation for the caretakers of Alzheimer’s and dementia patients in The Villages. Their monthly meetings are two hours long and filled with various activities and refreshments. Their 27 trained volunteer facilitators create a friendly and welcoming environment for participants, and lead activities in the cafes. Carol Wolf is OMC’s Volunteer Coordinator. She conducts training for volunteers and assigns their activities.
This month OMC held Holiday parties at their meetings. Hosted by AVIV, the 26 couples and 25 volunteers in attendance were treated to lunch and festive holiday music. Looking forward to 2023, Bender and Boyden are planning a “Night Out Gala” fundraiser for April. Fundraising will be a major focus for OMC next year, as will community outreach and expanding into new communities. We encourage anyone caring for someone suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia to reach out to Bender and Boyden and get to one of the Our Moment Cafes in The Villages.