The Greater Lewes Community Village has changed its name and expanded its outreach, but its mission remains the same as it has been for the past six years: helping older adults to live independent lives as long as possible.
The GLCV board of directors has announced that the Greater Lewes Community Village will now be known as Village Volunteers.
“The change has been driven by our expansion into Milton and Rehoboth, and by a need to emphasize the volunteer nature of the organization in a crowded field of for-profit agencies that also serve older adults,” said Don Challenger, a board member and chair of the communications committee. “We also wanted to emphasize continuity with the past – and our continued ties to the national Village to Village network – by keeping ‘Village’ as the anchor of our name.”
In addition to the name change, promotional phrases and taglines will be used in Village Volunteers’ material directed to member and volunteer recruitment. These include “Helping older adults live independently,” “Share your time, your skills, your way” and “Get to know us before you need us.”
“This new name and the taglines will help us build on our success and give us a clear, consistent identity in the public eye,” Challenger said. “We’re growing well beyond our original boundaries, so we realized that our name should give us room for that growth.”
Executive Director Jackie Sullivan said although some members and volunteers might find it difficult to adapt to the change, there was a need to counter the “You’re not in my neighborhood” response from both prospective members and volunteers who reside outside city limits. “There was also a need to differentiate us from for-profit service organizations,” Sullivan said.
“The new name serves us well,” said board member Ingrid Miller, who has been the Village ambassador to the Lewes Chamber of Commerce for three years. “It has been a continuing challenge to correct misinterpretations of what we are and who we serve.” She said some chamber members assumed the Vllage was a housing development or homeowners association. “I correct that impression and make a point of setting us apart from other for-profit organizations serving older adults.”
Miller said, “Our new name reflects the fact that we want to be more receptive to a wider population as we work to recruit volunteers to serve members in communities beyond Lewes.”