Maui Business

AARP Hawaiʻi presents volunteer Vicki Franco with highest state community service award

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Vicki Franco (center) received the prestigious Andrus Award for Community Service by AARP Hawaiʻi Volunteer President Gary Simon and AARP Hawaiʻi State Director Kealiʻi Lopez. Photo Courtesy: AARP Hawaiʻi

AARP Hawai‘i  recognized AARP volunteer leader and veterans advocate Vicki Franco with the Andrus Award for Community Service, the organization’s most prestigious state volunteer award for community service. 

As the Honolulu volunteer team leader, Franco partnered with staff and other volunteers to develop AARP Hawaiʻi’s volunteer-led orientation and onboarding system; increase multi-cultural engagement and veterans engagement; and organize fun-with-purpose activities and AARP member appreciation events.

“For those whom she leads, she is a model of the benefits of a fun-filled, purpose driven life,” said Gary Simon, the AARP Hawaiʻi Volunteer President. “Because of her, other volunteers are able to use their skills and talents to enhance the community.”

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Supporting veterans is a particular passion for Franco. She helped organize the 2021 Hawaiʻi Virtual Veterans Summit to connect veterans with information and resources. She worked with other volunteers to put together kits with COVID-19 supplies for homeless veterans. Her team also wrote personal Veterans Day thank you cards to send to residents at Tripler Community Living Center.

Franco received the award at a virtual ceremony at AARP’s annual volunteer recognition lunch earlier this month.

“The winners of the Andrus Award set an example for all of us,” said Keali‘i Lopez, the AARP Hawai‘i state director. “AARP has long valued the spirit of volunteerism and the important contributions volunteers make to their communities, neighbors and the programs they serve.”

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Recipients across the nation were chosen for their ability to enhance the lives of AARP members and prospective members; improve the community in or for which the work was performed; and inspire others to volunteer.

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