Senior Corps Senior Corps Corporation for National and Community Service
Research: Senior Companion Program Overview

Through the Senior Companion Program, people age 60 and older provide assistance and friendship to frail individuals who are homebound and, generally, living alone. By taking care of simple chores, providing transportation to medical appointments, and offering contact to the outside world, Senior Companions often provide the essential services that enable frail older Americans to continue to live in their own homes. They also provide respite care to relieve live-in caretakers for short periods of time.

Senior Companions not only assist the frail elderly with chores and errands, they also help make the lives of the people they serve less lonely. Many Senior Companions serve individuals for several years and form the most meaningful friendships in their lives.

Senior Companions usually serve two to four clients on a weekly basis, serving 20 hours a week. Senior Companions meet income eligibility requirements and receive small stipends.

NATIONAL OVERVIEW 1999
SENIOR COMPANION PROGRAM
1.   FEDERAL PROJECT GRANTS ALLOCATION 1/.... $36 MILLION
     NON-FEDERAL SUPPORT 1/ ................. $24 MILLION
2.   NUMBER OF PROJECTS 1/ 
     FEDERAL FUNDED................................ 157
     NON-FEDERAL ................................... 50
     TOTAL......................................... 207
3.   NUMBER OF BUDGETED VSYS 1/
     FEDERAL FUNDED.............................. 8,750
     NON-FEDERAL ................................ 3,200
     TOTAL ..................................... 11,950
4. SENIOR COMPANIONS WHO SERVED IN THE 12 MONTHS
ENDING 6/30/99) 2/......................... 14,700
5. NUMBER OF CLIENTS SERVED ANNUALLY 2/......  61,900
6. TOTAL HOURS SERVED ANNUALLY 1/ ...... 12.5 MILLION
7.   VOLUNTEER CHARACTERISTICS 2/
GENDER:
FEMALE.............................. 85%
MALE................................ 15%
	HISPANIC ETHNICITY ....................... 11%
RACIAL GROUP:
WHITE............................... 60% 
BLACK/AFRICAN AMERICAN.............. 33% 
ASIAN...............................  4% 
AMERICAN INDIAN/ALASKA NATIVE.......  2% 
HAWAIIAN/PACIFIC ISLANDER........... less than 1%
AGE:
60-64............................... 16%
65-74............................... 51% 
75-84............................... 28%
85+.................................  5% 
8.   AGES OF CLIENTS SERVED 2/
22-44 ..............................  4%
45-64 .............................. 9% 
65-74 .............................. 22% 
75-84 .............................. 36%
85 +  .............................. 30%
* Consistent with Census 2000, ethnicity is now counted separately
from race in federal data collections. Therefore, volunteers of
Hispanic ethnicity are now also counted in the appropriate racial group. 
9.  VOLUNTEERS AND CLIENTS BY SPECIAL NEEDS AREA (ROUNDED) 2/
        			   	   VOLUNTEERS* CLIENTS
A. AIDS/HIV ................       160      370
B. ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE .....     2,600    6,710
C. CHRONIC CARE/FRAIL ELDERLY    9,780   32,700
D. DEVELOPMENTALLY DISABLED      1,810    4,650
E. EMOTIONALLY IMPAIRED ....     1,750    4,430
F. HEARING IMPAIRED ........     1,620    3,270
G. SHORT-TERM DISABILITIES .     1,050    5,090
H. SUBSTANCE ABUSE .........       220      520
I. TERMINALLY ILL ..........       890    6,890
J.  VISUALLY IMPAIRED .......     2,620    5,150
K.  OTHER ...................       560     1,790
* Senior Companions serve multiple clients who may
have different needs. 
10.  TYPES OF VOLUNTEER STATIONS 2/
A. CLINICS (NON-RESIDENTIAL) ...........     1%
B. HOSPICES ................ ...........     2%
C. HOSPITAL/MEDICAL CENTERS ............     5%
D. NURSING/CONVALESCENT ................    11%
E. RES LONG-TERM CARE ..................    10%
F. ADULT DAY CARE ......................     8%
G. REHAB CENTERS .......................     4%
H. NON-RES MENTAL HEALTH ...............     4%
I. MULTI-PURPOSE CENTERS ...............    15%
J. PUBLIC/CONGREGATE HOUSING ...........     8%
K. NON-PROFIT HOME HEALTH CARE .........     8%
L. NON-PROFIT AGENCIES ON AGING ........     9%
M. VETERANS ASSOCIATIONS ...............     1%
N. OTHER PUBLIC HLTH ...................     1%
O.  OTHER HLTH CARE .....................     2%
P.  OTHER SOCIAL SERVICE ................    11%
** Senior Companions may serve at more than one station.
11.  STATIONS ACTIVE 6/30/99 2/................. 3,150
DATA SOURCES:
1/ FY99 Figures from FY01 Submission to Congress (2/00)
2/ Data Collection Submitted by Projects (1999)

If you have any questions, please e-mail us at [email protected].