Janina Skulskienė – Lithuania 🇱🇹

The “Tango” of my Volunteering

My name is Janina Skulskienė. I am 73 years old, and I live in the beautiful town of Gargždai, Klaipėda region, Lithuania. In 2014, upon reaching the well-deserved retirement, I joined the Klaipeda region U3A. I was elected the chairperson of the U3A board, and I have been leading the board ever since. Being the chairperson is voluntary work, both challenging and requiring a lot of responsibility and imagination, but I enjoy doing it. In addition to this, I am in charge of the dance group called Skinija. My duties include taking care of the performers’ clothes, shoes, and concerts. On Sundays, I attend a church choir which gives me spiritual peace. I have always been active. Due to my considerable experience, I often get invited to give a hand during the events organized by the local community center, the cultural center, and the library. Some of my favorite activities include being on duty at Santa’s office answering children’s letters, working as a guide at the museum.

I have never taken part in any volunteer training program. Little did I know about the Senior Award Program until I was requested to present it to the members of our U3A. The program seemed appealing, and I decided to participate. Even more, I decided to set an example and inspire other U3A members to engage.

Having read the requirements of the Senior Award program, I set myself some personal development goals, both for learning and physical activity. My aims included learning to cross-stitch, weave, and make jewelry from leather and denim. Besides, I set up my mind to improve my knowledge of Lithuanian history. I also made efforts to improve my mental well-being and physical health. This program helped me realize that coming to a standstill is out of the question, that it is only moving forward that brings the joy of life. It feels great to stay active and do what I love. Some of the things that I learned about myself during the Senior Award Program were greatest assets – communication and cooperation. I would describe my experience in the Senior Award Program as a beautiful, slow Tango. Health permitting, I will continue with this program in the future, too.

In the first picture: Having learned to make flowers from denim, I started teaching others.

In the second picture: I love reading fairy-tales to children in the library.