Monday, December 11, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - Tuesday Van #1 Crew!

Interesting fact:  A nursing home stay costs $75,000-$100,000 per year.  A study by the Weintraub Foundation showed that home repairs help an elderly person live at home for 13 months longer than expected (K. Walker, Baltimore Sun, 2012)

Terry O’Connor, George Ann Muller and Harvey Rappaport are the Tuesday, Chore Van #1 team.

Mrs. C writes:  “I’m sending a B-I-G thank you to your organization and volunteers.  I didn’t know what to expect when I scheduled my repairs, and I was a little apprehensive.  When I saw your team of 3 volunteers with warm smiles and name tags displayed, I immediately felt at ease.  The speed and expertise with which they fixed everything—from a dangerous protruding screw on a doorplate, to installing a lock, to tightening a toilet seat—was most impressive.”

Learn more about the Chore Program online here.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - Nunzio!

For the past 5 years,  Nunzio Garzino has been volunteering for Chore with the Thursday, Chore Van #2 crew.  Prior to his retirement, he was a Senior Vice President/Branch Manager for Prudential Financial, Thompson McKinnon Securities and Wachovia Securities.  His financial career spanned 44 years.  He loves to play golf, and is out on the golf course two or three times a week, sometimes participating in tournaments and club championships.  He considers himself a ‘jack of all trades’ when it comes to handyman skills.  He and his wife also volunteer at their local church. 

“I could say that I volunteer for Chore because it gives me something to do, but the reality is that I enjoy helping other people.  How many times have we received compliments from widows and widowers—I don’t have enough fingers and toes to count them all.  We hear comments from our clients such as: ‘Oh, I only owe $36 for two grab bars installed by Chore?  I called a local handyman and he wanted to charge me $300 for the first grab bar, and $150 more for the second one.  Being of service is what keeps me coming back week after week and year after year.  Plus all the Chore volunteers are great to work with, especially the ones on my Thursday crew.”

Learn more about the Chore Program online here.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - Jim!

Jim Bergen’s last occupation was as a freight elevator operator across the street from the Work Trade Center—he witnessed the collapse of the Twin Towers on 9/11.

Before that, he worked in the auto repair business and as an apartment building superintendent.  He enjoys crossword puzzles and will take a stab at fixing anything!  He was inspired to join Chore 3 years ago by his now disabled friend and former Chore volunteer Kevin, and he has been a member of the Wednesday, Chore Van #1 crew ever since.  

He tells the story of the 85 year old lady who pushed him out of the way so she could show him exactly what she wanted him to fix.  When the subject of age came up, she politely informed him that he was ‘no spring chicken himself’!  “Being a part of Chore means helping people who can’t help themselves.  I get more satisfaction out of doing what I do on Wednesdays for some needy person than if I were getting paid for it!”

Learn more about the Chore Program online here.

Monday, November 27, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - Bruce!

Prior to joining Chore 3 years ago with the Wednesday, Chore Van #1 crew, Bruce Linke managed a team that was responsible for writing and maintaining raw material, in-process package materials, artwork and finished product specifications for a global consumer products company.  In his spare time, he enjoys fishing, motorcycling, home repair and kitchen remodeling. 

“When I retired, I wanted to donate some of my free time and skills to help others.  I’ve been in many residences and it is sometimes sad to see the condition of peoples’ environments.  Regardless, most people are appreciative of what we do and it’s a good feeling to know that you helped to make things a little better for them.”

Learn more about the Chore Program online here.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - Bill!

Bill Nugent was Director of Military Sales/Marketing, world -wide Military commissaries, exchanges and ships afloat before retiring and joining Chore in 2010, as part of the Friday, Chore Van #2 crew.  He also volunteers at his swim club and has been a mentor of veterans at Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Yellow Ribbon Program.  He enjoys golf, spends time at his local health club and working on his yard. 

“Chore provides an opportunity to troubleshoot problems, learn some new things, enjoy camaraderie of fellow volunteers and clients and give back to society.”

Learn more about the Chore Program online here.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - George Ann!

George Ann Muller works for NBC as a lighting director part time.  She has been volunteering with Chore for the past 7 years, with the Tuesday, Chore Van #1 crew.  She is also involved with the Chance At Life Cat Rescue organization.  In her spare time she enjoys gardening and carpentry.

“Chore means that people can stay in their homes longer, and that is important.  Also, it is very difficult to get anyone to come out to do minor fixes—that’s where Chore comes in.  People need our help and I am happy to offer it.  As the only woman on the crews, I am often met with surprise, and also I am asked if I am married to one of the guys!"

Learn more about the Chore Program online here.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Meet the Chore Volunteers - Pete!

Pete Tilgner volunteers with Chore on Mondays and Wednesdays, on the Chore Van #2.  He has been with us for 8 years.  He was an art teacher for 37 years at Ben Franklin Middle School before retiring.  Hiking and trail maintenance and development are two of his other interests.  He was a New York/New Jersey Trail Supervisor for Sterling Forest State Park for 14 years, and currently helps maintain seven miles of trails at the Tenafly Nature Center.  

Since retirement, for the past 17 years he has been creating his own art work in the form of digital/manipulated photo images, samples of which can be found at .  “Chore means being with like-minded friends doing work that helps people live safer, better lives.  I volunteer for Chore because it allows me to use the skills I have developed over the years—the work gives me satisfaction in knowing that I was instrumental in keeping our clients safe at home.  The added benefit is not only meeting the people of Bergen County, but also working with my fellow volunteers.  Every day is an adventure.  A trailer park on Route 46 or a high rise in Fort Lee—we see it all.  The most recent memorable moment was a client in Teaneck who had a majestic cat that required a pet ladder to climb into the easy chair it was regally occupying.  I enjoy the pets in peoples’ homes.”

Support Chore and the many other programs at the Bergen Volunteer Center at our Annual Hearts of Gold Gala on Thursday, November 9 at the Stony Hill Inn. Visit to learn more.