We Are Family is a dedicated and truly selfless local organization working hard to make our community a better place by serving over 700 seniors each month in the Columbia Heights, Shaw, North Capitol Street, Petworth, and Adams Morgan neighborhoods.
Co-founded in 2004 by two local residents and long time social justice advocates, Mark Andersen and Tulin Ozdeger—with the help of neighborhood seniors—the organization provides services, advocacy, and brings companionship into the homes of isolated, low-income elderly. Above all, they offer the invaluable opportunity for volunteers and recipients alike to build friendships across the boundaries of race, class, religion, age, culture, and sexual orientation.
“It makes me feel so delighted to know that someone cares, that they go out of their way to care for the needy, for the hungry…because that is what we are to do, to look out for one another—for the destitute, for the homeless, for the sick, for those who don’t have family.”
— Ms. Jaqueline Twitty, a longtime DC resident
We Are Family is able to do this largely through the work of volunteers coordinated by co-directors Mark and Tulin have more than four decades of combined experience serving seniors and fighting poverty in these neighborhoods. While many of those who help We Are Family’s work are seniors—they are the people who, after all, have built this community—they need you as well!
The possibilities are truly endless: Mark & Tulin are able to tailor a volunteer task to whatever time or gift you might have, from helping out once a year on holidays, to calling lonely seniors once a week, to making home visits or delivering groceries on Saturday mornings once or twice a month, to pairing up individual volunteers with nearby seniors, and beyond. An important note, a lot of opportunities are great for all ages so parents, please bring your kids to share in this wonderful and multi-generational experience, too. We all benefit when we build relationships and support our neighbors.
Please join in supporting some of our most valuable neighbors—our senior residents! More than simply a social service agency, We Are Family is an experiment in building a just, caring, and inclusive community—help them realize that dream. Give the gift of your presence to an isolated senior—and get to know the history of your community at the same time!
Upcoming opportunities: Columbia Heights & Parkview Grocery Delivery, Saturday, March 24, 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM. Meet at the Kelsey Apartments, 3322 14th St, NW (1 block north of Columbia Heights Metro). If Saturdays aren’t good, you can get connected to a senior or two to befriend during the week. For more details, check the Events section at wearefamilydc.org