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BLOOMINGTON — An organization that works to keep older adults independent has lifted its temporary hold on new applicants after attracting and training more volunteers.

Faith in Action will resume accepting new care receivers, age 60 and older, beginning Tuesday.

"I am elated to be able to recruit enough volunteers to open services to new care receivers and I hope we can continue to serve new care receivers and recruit new volunteers," Faith in Action Director Doretta Herr told The Pantagraph on Monday.

Faith in Action volunteers drive older adults to medical appointments, provide grocery shopping assistance, do friendly visits and perform seasonal maintenance in Bloomington-Normal, Heyworth, Hudson and Towanda.

But in October, Faith in Action put a temporary hold on new applicants because its increase in volunteers had not matched its larger increase in care receivers.

Following a Pantagraph article and other community conversations about the ban, 26 volunteers applied and were approved and trained, meaning that Faith in Action now has 457 volunteers, Herr said. An additional 11 volunteers are in the process of being approved, she said.

Faith in Action has 626 care receivers. Another 14 will be approved quickly after the ban is lifted, Herr said.

One reason for the increase in care receivers and volunteers is because of increasing community recognition of Faith in Action and what it does, Herr said. In the fiscal year that ended Thursday, Faith in Action volunteers provided 11,500 services, a 30 percent increase from three years earlier.

Faith in Action receives no state or federal money, instead relying on donations, particularly from church congregations who supply the volunteers.

People interested in becoming volunteers may call 309-827-7780 for more information.

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Follow Paul Swiech on Twitter: @pg_swiech

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Health Reporter

Health reporter for Lee Enterprises Central Illinois.

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