Liz Jones is an entrepreneur, mom of two teenagers and self-declared volunteer extraordinaire. The Herndon resident admits that she finds it hard to sit still and is always looking for ways to give back to her community. As a member of the “sandwich generation”, Liz found herself raising her own children while simultaneously caring for her Dad from a distance. She distinctly understands the hardships and challenges that older adults face when they must give up driving.
After her Dad got into multiple car accidents which forced him to give up his license, Liz and her sister struggled with coordinating transportation to his regular dialysis appointments multiple times a week. They felt “blessed” when they finally found someone who could help them with the driving.
“Not only did Deb drive Dad to dialysis,” says Jones, “but she walked him in and out of the appointment, gently woke him up if he happened to oversleep and offered companionship during their rides together. She was a godsend.”
Liz and her sister understood that Deb was offering their Dad so much more than just a ride. It gave them peace of mind knowing that he was safe and traveling with someone who they trusted. Not only did their Dad develop a close relationship with Deb, Liz felt that Deb served as their eyes and ears on the ground and trusted her to tell them if something seemed out of sorts.
“Having a driver for Dad took the burden off me, both mentally and emotionally,” says Liz.
After her Dad passed away, Liz knew that she wanted to find a way to pay it forward in her own community. She connected with Herndon Village Network and immediately started picking up rides, as time allows.
“I’ve done a thousand different volunteer things throughout my life, and when I’m a driver I know immediately that I am making a difference in that person’s day.”