Volunteer Opportunities

Interns and Volunteers

Volunteers, interns and community partners play an important role in senior care and services and in particular, the LeadingAge Oklahoma Music for the Ages – A Music and MemorySM Program. Each day in every senior care environment, volunteers support and encourage staff, families and seniors. Through their contributions of time, energy, inspiration and expertise, volunteers often report they receive more than they give.

Anyone may apply to become a volunteer.

Here’s how you can help bring Music & Memory to your home community:

Learn About Volunteering



There’s more than one way to help to create or join a LeadingAge Oklahoma Music for the Ages Service Project.

1 Tech Help

The program uses a computer-based music library, usually iTunes, to store the music for all the residents/clients in the care organization. A savvy volunteer can help with technology to download music, organize playlists, arrange for equipment organization, and teach staff how to charge and use the music players & adjust playlists.

Recommended skills:

  • A passion for perfection in finding the right music for each individual.
  • Enjoys researching music titles, online and onsite.
  • Understands iTunes and can organize an iTunes library using music downloads and CDs.
  • Logical, analytical mind.
  • Detail oriented.
  • Computer savvy.


2 Personalized Music Interviews

This program relies on music that makes an elder’s heart sing! But, because many of the elders in the project have dementia and aren’t able to communicate easily, sometimes a music “investigator” is needed to find out what those songs are. A service project for someone with good interpersonal skills or an interest in music history could include interviewing the residents to find their favorite songs, calling family members to learn more about their history, or using YouTube or iTunes to play songs from their youth to see if the resident responds more positively to some songs.

            Recommended skills:

  • Excellent communication skills.
  • Thoughtful listener.
  • Comfortable with interviewing – oral history research a plus.
  • Compassion for and interest in elders.
  • Empathy.
  • Adept at note taking or recording comments for retrieval and follow up.


3 Fundraising, Donations and Community Support

To make this program successful, care organizations need music, music players, speakers, headphones and iTunes gift cards. A service project could assist development and communications staff raise funds for equipment, create and implement an iPod donation drive, write grants, and raise community awareness and goodwill for this program. By participating in this service area, you could develop your marketing and promotional skills to raise money for these items or solicit donations from the community. 

  • Promote an iPod Donation Drive

An iPod donation drive is a great way to collect gently used digital devices for people who need them most, support your local community or a sister community in need, and raise awareness for Music & Memory.

This is a wonderful activity for a grade school, high school or college community service project; church, synagogue or mosque community outreach; or service club program.

Anyone whose family member or friend has been affected by Alzheimer’s will have a strong motivation to contribute. In addition, as more and more people switch their music collections from iPods to smartphones, there’s a growing supply of second-hand iPods. We want to keep these devices out of landfills and put them into the hands of elders who can really benefit from personalized playlists.

            Recommended skills:

  • Excellent oral and written communication.
  • Well-organized.
  • Detailed oriented.
  • Strong interpersonal skills; enjoys working with the public.
  • Team player. Fundraising and/or public relations experience a plus.


4 Program Development

Every program needs policies and procedures to clearly articulate program goals, processes and outcomes to all staff across the organization.  This service project could develop your creative, analytical and communication techniques.  Determining the who, what, when and where of any program is a priority for any well-run successful program.  Interns and volunteers can work with leadership to research and draft policies, procedures, drawings, guidelines and best practices to create a well-organized approach to your program.

            Recommended skills:

  • Excellent writing and oral communication.
  • Good listener; works well with leadership and staff to gain their input.
  • Well organized; analytical.
  • Detailed oriented.
  • Proficient with Word or similar writing software; able to lay out text clearly, organize content in a format that is easy to skim.


5 Educate Family Members and Staff

Programs succeed when all parties understand the benefits of the program, know how and when to use the iPods and develop a sense of ownership and commitment to the program. Interns and volunteers could introduce the program to family members and staff.  Develop teaching materials, conduct presentations and training sessions to explain how the program works as well as the benefits.

Recommended Skills:

  • Excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Strong communicator, can adapt explanation to the needs and abilities of the individual.
  • Empathetic and patient.
  • Understands details of the program as well as the benefits.
  • Clear and confident presenting to a group.
  • Proficient at Word, PowerPoint or similar writing and presentation software.
  • Some first-hand experience working with residents and their iPods is a plus.


6 Program Evaluation

All programs, regardless of when implemented, need to have a continuous quality review.  This is especially important for newly implemented programs to assess effectiveness of outcomes and processes and introduce changes if needed. Interns and volunteers can work with leadership to identify evaluation tools, collect data and analyze results to provide important quantitative measures of progress toward outcomes.

            Recommended skills.

  • Experience with research design, survey tools, data collection and analysis.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.
  • Good listener; works well with leadership and staff to gain their input.
  • Well-organized, analytical.
  • Detail oriented.
  • Proficient in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, or similar software.

Important Information for Volunteers

  • Code of conduct – example of what you may encounter at your volunteer site. Download document

Contact Us

Contact us about becoming a volunteer and for all other volunteer-related questions.