Mary Brainerd, Springfield Chapter

I first heard about Mass Senior Action from John Bennett, former MSAC President. I often invited John to come to my social work college classes to talk about his work in the community. He would share about the accomplishments of MSAC and the power of this organization to bring about change through legislative advocacy and collective action. I joined MSAC and made a promise to myself that I would become more active in the organization when I retired. 

Well here I am, three years into my retirement, and continuing to learn more and more about MSAC and all it does, for seniors and everyone else. I am a member of the Springfield Chapter and have been appointed secretary of the executive board. Our chapter is very active and innovative, and I always learn a great deal at our chapter meetings about current issues facing seniors and other vulnerable citizens in our Commonwealth. I have participated in collecting signatures for our Healthcare Campaign by visiting senior centers in our area. I have been to the State House more often in the past year than I ever have in my entire professional career as a social worker. I am learning how to advocate with legislators and have been impressed with the warm welcome and respect we receive when we visit them. I attended the recent hearing introducing our healthcare legislation to the Healthcare Finance Committee. I felt the power of the blue shirts as we filled the hearing room.

I am very proud of being a member of MSAC. I feel as if I have found a group of people that share my values and hopes for improving the quality of life for all, young and old. I look forward to continuing to grow and learn through my participation in MSAC. There is no better way to spend my retirement years.