Portland program matches retirees with nonprofits

Retirees commit 1,000 hours to a nonprofit

Gail Dougherty matched up with the nonprofit Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center where she's recently been hired part-time, Aug. 9, 2017. (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A program in Portland is helping recent retirees match up with local nonprofits in order to put their skills to good use.

Gail Dougherty worked at Intel as a technical writer for 16 years before retiring last year. However, she didn’t want to just sit around the house.

“My plan was maybe I can stuff envelopes or volunteer in some capacity,” Dougherty said. “To help do something or see if there’s a way to use skills or volunteer time because I know there’s always so many needs.”

Gail Dougherty worked at Intel as a technical writer for 16 years before retiring, Aug. 9, 2017. (KOIN)

That’s one of the reasons Social Venture Partners hosts the Encore Fellows Program, which is a matchmaking service for retirees and nonprofits.

A fellowship means a recent retiree commits 1,000 hours to a nonprofit.

Maria Loredo is the chief operations officer at Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center — a nonprofit, which focuses on helping migrant and seasonal farmworkers who need health care.

Virginia Garcia is one of the nonprofits that’s paired up with retirees. The health center currently has 7 fellows, including Gail, working for them.

“I’m amazed at how experienced they are, how diligent they work and how responsibly they are, so we hire them and it’s been wonderful working with them,” Loredo said.

SVP said they’re always looking for more retirees and nonprofits for their program.

Steve Maser is the manager at Encore Fellows, which pairs recent retirees with nonprofits, Aug. 9, 2017. (KOIN)

Steve Maser, Encore Fellows manager, said, “They’re interested in doing something more with their lives and that’s why it’s called an encore program. Their 2nd career.”

Dougherty’s fellowship with Virginia Garcia led to her being hired on part-time.

“I’m really happy to be able to continue working here,” Dougherty said. “This is really what I wanted to do, was hoping it would develop into something longer term because I would like to keep working for a few more years.”