Seniors Helping Seniors: Active adults gathering for the greater good

Homeowner and widow Marilyn Walker is thankful for the work of Seniors Helping Seniors. She shows off the handrail recently installed on her front sidewalk. (Jean Ann Collins/Community Impact Newspaper)
Homeowner and widow Marilyn Walker is thankful for the work of Seniors Helping Seniors. She shows off the handrail recently installed on her front sidewalk. (Jean Ann Collins/Community Impact Newspaper)

Homeowner and widow Marilyn Walker is thankful for the work of Seniors Helping Seniors. She shows off the handrail recently installed on her front sidewalk. (Jean Ann Collins/Community Impact Newspaper)

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Lewis Reichert, Ted Wilson and Dick Baker plan for the day's projects in their makeshift office at McDonald's. Seniors Helping Seniors meets there every Wednesday morning to go over work orders and get assignments. (Jean Ann Collins/Community Impact Newspaper)
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Jean Ann Collins/Community Impact Newspaper
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Lewis Reichert, Ted Wilson and Dick Baker plan for the day's projects in their makeshift office at McDonald's. Seniors Helping Seniors meets there every Wednesday morning to go over work orders and get assignments. (Jean Ann Collins/Community Impact Newspaper)
A dedicated group of senior adults gathers every Wednesday morning at McDonald’s at Hardin Boulevard and Eldorado Parkway in McKinney—not just for coffee and a sausage biscuit, but for a much greater mission.

Seniors Helping Seniors is a nonprofit organization committed to assisting the elderly with home projects they are unable to complete.

What started as a spin-off of a similar group to the south, Plain-O Helpers, Seniors Helping Seniors is a faith-based handyman service.

“I am very proud of our volunteer effort,” said organization founder John Moore, who got his start in projects like these through Habitat for Humanity. “We are all retired. We all want a little something to do, and we all want to give back to our community.”

The volunteer group completed 648 works orders last year, data showed.


Basic home repair projects range from installing handrails or grab bars to caulking to changing air filters or smoke detector batteries.

Minor plumbing help is also available.•Services are provided free of charge, but Seniors Helping Seniors does accept donations. In addition, the organization has partnered with Kiwanis Club and local churches that help sponsor their volunteer efforts.

Job orders are screened and assigned weekly, and partners head out from their makeshift office at McDonald’s with their tools, ready to get the day’s jobs done.

“These seniors are an answer to a widow’s prayer,” said Marilyn Walker, who recently requested help when a clothes rod fell in her closet and her bathroom faucet would not stop leaking. “There are so many things a widow simply cannot do. My air filter is in my attic—old ladies don’t climb in the attic.”

According to volunteer Norm Counts, people do not have to be a handyman to get involved.

“I’m just his tool-toter on the job site,” Counts said. “I spend most of my time talking to the people we help. A lot of the people we serve are lonely and enjoy our company. It’s therapeutic.”

There are screenings in place to ensure the seniors do not take on a project beyond their skill level. Additionally, Seniors Helping Seniors does have connections to provide assistance with jobs requiring a higher level of equipment and expertise.

“Honestly, it’s not about the work we do,” said volunteer Glenn Lowe. “What I like most about Seniors Helping Seniors is that I go home after working on Wednesday and feel blessed, and I hope I was able to be a blessing to someone else.”
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