Why I Love and Support SAIL–My Story Donate to SAIL
by Charter Member Sue Goldstein
I first learned about SAIL at a community presentation in 2004. Listening to the now retired Oakwood Village CEO John Noreika report the actual costs of building new retirement communities, the increasing population of older adults, and anticipated cuts in public funding, I was immediately convinced that SAIL was (and still is) good social policy and a good fit for me.
I could see how lending a hand could actually help someone stay in their home and live more independently and that some day, perhaps someone would lend a hand to help me if I needed it. Also, as a realtor, I’ve witnessed first-hand the losses older people experience when they have to move because of a crisis—losses of prized possessions, lower gains from the sale, higher moving costs, etc.—all due to having to move without planning and in a panic. In many of those situations, I was not convinced the new condo or apartment would actually bring the comfort and security the client had enjoyed in his home.
Being that the “pay it forward” idea at SAIL made a lot of sense to me personally, I signed up as a volunteer driver in 2005 and also joined the SAIL Connections Committee. The committee helps plan programs, promotes member interest groups, and advises SAIL’s leadership. I have offered advice to members contemplating a move, and I was even asked to teach a class to fellow members on the kinds of improvements to make before selling their home. Volunteering during these past ten years has given me the chance to meet the most amazing people!
When I signed up as a volunteer, I never dreamed that nine years later I would find myself faced with a major health event and would actually need some of those same volunteer services I had provided to so many members. Helping others always came easy for me—receiving help was a big step for me, but I had no choice. It has allowed me to understand what it’s like for fellow members—people once completely independent and in good health, suddenly having an illness or disability preventing them from participating in activities they used to do effortlessly. Having a serious illness is a life changer. It brought home the reality of how important my family is, my friends and colleagues, and the many resources and contacts I have at SAIL.
The saying “it takes a village” couldn’t be closer to the truth! I am so grateful for all that SAIL offers, especially an ongoing investment in growing its volunteer program. I hope you will join me in supporting this amazing organization!