News & Success Stories

Recognized Partners across San Diego County are the driving force behind the strength, reach and impact of the Live Well San Diego vision. Read their inspiring success stories below.

Elderhelp’s Judi Graham Celebrates the Joy of Volunteering

Post Date:03/22/2024 3:54 PM

ElderHelp Volunteer Judi Graham smiles as she visits with senior Gilbert Olsen 

Submitted by Gretchen Veihl, Director of Philanthropy, ElderHelp of San Diego


Choose joy.

It’s the sign that greets all visitors to Judi Graham’s home and the motto she lives by each and every day. As a loving caregiver to her late husband Tad, Judi maximized every moment they had together through his prolonged illness. When he passed away in 2016, she turned her focus toward another of her loves—volunteering.

Like many ElderHelp volunteers, Judi shares her generous heart throughout the community. She leads activities for her church and spearheads projects for P.E.O., a women’s educational organization. But somehow it always comes back to seniors.

“I was very close to both sets of grandparents. I’ve always had an attachment to older people who may need some attention and need to be heard.”

Judi’s biggest gift is her ability to deeply connect with every life she touches. No one knows that better than Gilbert Olsen.

“I love listening to his stories,” she shares, “and I love sharing a few of my own. ElderHelp gives seniors one more choice. That speaks to me, and I love being a part of it.”

Judi is quick to respond to ElderHelp’s ever-changing needs. Whether it’s friendly visiting, check-in calls, or even a survey to improve ElderHelp’s software.

“I look at what’s available when I clock in my time each week. Volunteering gives me laughter and gives me purpose in this current chapter of my life.”

As one of over 350 ElderHelp volunteers, Judi’s contributions were recently celebrated at ElderHelp’s Essence of Life Awards & Charity Auction. Her fulfillment, her inspiration, and her sense of community are what many ElderHelp volunteers experience as they live well in San Diego.

For more information about ElderHelp and how you can change the life of an older adult, please visit


ElderHelp Wooden sign that reads Choose Joy

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