Special to The Hays Daily News

Sister Mary Ann Schippers and Cecelia Budke of Hays were honored for their dedication to serving the frail elderly at the December inservice at Sternberg Museum of Natural History in Hays on Dec. 1.

Schippers and Budke have each served one year as Senior Companions, helping others remain independently in their own homes. Both women serve individuals in Hays.

Senior Companions are people age 55 and older who volunteer their time to help others. They assist with light chores, run errands, assist with transportation to appointments, provide respite care for family caregivers, make wellness checks, monitor medication and provide daily companionship and support. There is no cost to the clients or families for the services provided.

The services not only help the individual who might need assistance because of recent release from the hospital, those who might have lost their driving privileges or those who have families who live a great distance from loved ones needing some support, but also caregivers, giving respite from 24 hour caregiving responsibilities.

For their service, Senior Companions are provided benefits which include a tax-free stipend, transportation allowance, accident and liability insurance, paid orientation, monthly training, sick leave, vacation, holidays and recognition.

The Senior Companion Program is sponsored by Fort Hays State University. For information, call (785) 628-5809.