The History of Villages
The idea of building a member-driven community dedicated to aging at home began in Boston, MA, in 2002, and has spread to hundreds of communities throughout the US. These villages range in size from 25 to 900 people. Most are incorporated as non-profit organizations. Most have some staff; some are operated entirely by volunteers. Virtually all emphasize offering “Volunteers First” over supplying paid providers.
Many people have family members willing to help, but the reality is that families cannot be there for everything or all the time. One prevalent attitude among village members is that they would like to enjoy their children and grandchildren rather than relying on them for everything.
The creation of a village allows members to build community, support each other, and develop necessary connections to resources, often at reduced costs. Each member contributes to the vitality of Wider Horizons through annual dues; most volunteer in meaningful ways.
Wider Horizons is a proud member of the Village to Village Network, which helps communities establish and manage their own aging in place initiatives called Villages.