December 30, 2021, 11:57 a.m. HST
AARP Hawai’i recognized Vicki Franco, AARP volunteer leader and veterans advocate, with the Andrus Award for Community Service, the organization’s most prestigious state volunteer award for community service .
As a volunteer team leader in Honolulu, Franco partnered with staff and other volunteers to develop the AARP Hawai’i volunteer-led orientation and induction system; increase multicultural engagement and veteran engagement; and organize fun activities and AARP member appreciation events.
“To those she leads, she is a role model of the benefits of a fun and motivated life,” said Gary Simon, president of AARP Hawai’i volunteers. “Because of her, other volunteers can use their skills and talents to improve the community. ”
Supporting veterans is a particular passion for Franco. She helped organize the 2021 Hawai’i Virtual Veterans Summit to connect Veterans with information and resources. She worked with other volunteers to assemble kits with COVID-19 supplies for homeless veterans. Her team also wrote personal Veterans Day thank you cards to send to residents of the Tripler Community Living Center.
Franco received the award in a virtual ceremony at AARP’s annual Volunteer Recognition Luncheon earlier this month.
“The Andrus Prize winners have set an example for all of us,” said Keali’i Lopez, State Director of AARP Hawai’i. “AARP has long valued the spirit of volunteerism and the important contributions volunteers make to their communities, neighbors and the programs they serve.
Recipients across the country were chosen for their ability to improve the lives of AARP members and prospective members; improve the community in or for which the work has been done; and inspire others to volunteer.