My motto in life has always been centered on these two things: never forget the children, and never forget the elderly. In some kind of way, every day, make them a part of your life. Make sure they know that they matter.
Eric King comes from a big family –12 children to be exact. He is the second oldest child, and credits that experience with the good works he is committed to today. As a volunteer for the AARP Foundation Experience Corps, Eric tutors and mentors elementary school children who are struggling with reading and literacy skills.
“What really got me was when I was doing a lesson with a student and we were trying to figure out some reading homework, and I saw the child understand for the first time and he went ‘OH!!’” said Eric. “That just grabbed my heart. I showed somebody how to do something, and it convinced me I could help these kids.”
Eric has been with the program since its inception eight years ago. He has since become a mentor in another capacity, as a site coordinator and monitor of new volunteers.
Eirc says it takes a certain demeanor to work with children. “You have to be committed and have compassion. The children need that. They don’t want to meet you and then not see you for three weeks. You have to engage with them,” said Eric. “You do get something back too, people always say they can’t believe I am 65, and I agree, I feel great. It keeps me active and healthy.”
Eric just retired from his job as a dietician at a local hospital and is now working with Alzheimer’s patients at a local nursing facility. He also serves as a Deacon at his church. In his spare time Eric admits to enjoying reality television with his wife, Betty. Eric's brother Michael will be joining him on the cruise.