Volunteers recognized for helping young and old in community

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. Volunteers with the St. Mary's Foster Grandparent and Senior Companion Programs are being recognized for their hours of dedication to the community.

The time in services the volunteers gave in 2013 for free is valued at $1.7 million.

"I was a nurse and a respiratory therapist for 50 years and coming into this program," said Mary Wierenga, a senior companion volunteer. "I just continued what I did all my life, which makes me feel great."

Volunteers who have been with the programs for five or ten years received special awards at a luncheon event Friday.

The foster grandparent volunteers mentor and tutor special needs and at-risk children.

The senior companions help homebound seniors run errands and do things that will help them stay in their homes longer.

The programs help 300 seniors and 1,300 children.

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