Love to Chat? Senior Center Looking for ‘Social Caller' Volunteers

The Groton Senior Center is looking for volunteers to socially call people who are at home and could benefit from a weekly chat.

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The Groton Senior Center is looking for people who love to talk and can spare 15-20 minutes a week. Their newest program "Call N Connect" needs volunteers.

"This program is for individuals to stay connected and have socialization through a phone when they can't leave their house," said Tomi Stanley, who leads the program at the senior center.

Up and running for about a month, the Call N Connect program is specifically aimed at helping seniors who might be at risk of social isolation.

"By having that one phone call it makes them not feel so lonely or they know there's still people out there who are thinking of them," said Stanley.

The program is as simple as it sounds. The senior center is looking for volunteers who can pick up the phone once a week and connect with someone who needs it.

"There's plenty of people that need that social contact. Their families don't live local or their families are working and they are home all day by themselves," said Mary Jo Riley, senior center supervisor.

Sarah Stanely is the program's first volunteer. She lives in New London and is a self-described "talker."

"Picking up the phone- hey how are you today? That's all you have do," said Sarah Stanley. "It definitely has value and is worthwhile."

Sarah Stanley said the commitment is about 15 minutes each week and she really looks forward to it.

"It really does touch my heart," said Stanely.

Brenda Sylvestre, a senior center regular, said she is lucky to have family in the area, but thinks the program would be helpful if she didn't have family nearby.

"Oh my gosh, I would be so happy. I would feel like somebody cared. It would be a connection," said Sylvestre.

The senior center uses a system, Call Hub, that allows phone numbers between callers to be kept confidential. They are contracting with Motion Picture & Television Fund for the program.

Volunteers do not have to live in Groton to participate. Calls can be made from home.

"The perfect volunteer is someone who just likes to chat and has a few minutes to give," said Stanley.

A background check is required for volunteers. Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer can call Tomi Stanley at 860-441-6782 or email

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