Spotlighting Fair Lawn For All Ages

Since its establishment in the 1920s, Fair Lawn, New Jersey has always been a vibrant community filled with warmth, diversity, and a spirit of belonging. 


One of the vibrant organizations that Fair Lawn has is a community initiative called “Fair Lawn for All Ages (FLFAA).” Initiated at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Mrs. Lisa MacClements says, “Its primary purpose is to bring programming and resources to older adult residents as well as to advocate for and influence municipal policy change that provides accommodations, education, and resources for the senior citizens of Fair Lawn, helping them to age in place.” 


Lisa MacClements is Fair Lawn’s Age-Friendly Coordinator and proud FLHS graduate Class of 1988. Lisa’s primary role is to manage a municipal grant awarded from the town, and oversee age-friendly programming over a five year period. 


What sets FLFAA apart is its Youth Volunteer Corps. Lisa shares, “My favorite thing about FLFAA is our intergenerational work through our Youth Volunteer Corps. In its three years, we have recruited over 250 Fair Lawn High School students, empowering them and providing them with opportunities to help our older adult residents, veterans, and mobility-challenged individuals with basic needs services like snow shoveling and leaf raking. These volunteers provide an invaluable service to the community while learning the immense power of giving back.” 


Ryan Nelke, a Fair Lawn High School student, serves as both a member and leader within the FLFAA Youth Corps. He shares, “Through the years of being a member of Fair Lawn for All Ages, I have taken part in many volunteer activities ranging from loading up trucks with equipment to shoveling senior citizens’ lawns during the winter months[.....] If I had to pinpoint my favorite aspect about Fair Lawn For All Ages, it definitely has to be when snow shoveling time comes around. Getting to see the warm smiles on seniors’ faces makes the volunteer work feel totally worth it, as being able to provide assistance for a demanding, manual task during the cold weather is a massive help for them.”


Social Media Coordinator Alan Nemkovsky shares his transformative journey as a member of Fair Lawn For All Ages. “FLFAA has allowed me to contribute to my community in a meaningful way where I can see first-hand how my work is helping others,” Nemkovsky says. 


This youth-led initiative, open to teenagers aged 14 to 18, has illuminated Fair Lawn for three years, fostering positive connections and building tremendous partnerships with  municipal departments and other organizations such as the Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Clubs, and the local PTA and PTOs. 


Lisa shares that the FLFAA community initiative is grant-funded, “The goal is to establish a municipally sustainable age-friendly program by the end of our five year grant cycle and attain an official age-friendly designation from the county. We would also like to begin building a network of adult volunteers to help further our service efforts for older adults in need.”


It is a pleasure to share that their dedication has not gone unnoticed. In 2021, Lisa MacClements, FLFAA Coordinator, was presented with the “Hometown Hero” award by Congressman Josh Gottheimer for the creation of the Youth Volunteer Corps. Additionally, just recently in 2024, the Fair Lawn Youth Volunteer Corps was named a nationally recognized “Program of Merit” by Generations United (GU) in Washington, DC. (GU is a non-profit advocacy organization that promotes intergenerational programming on a national level.) 


Fair Lawn for All Ages welcomes all who wish to be a part of this compassionate journey. For students eager to make a difference, visit Lisa suggests, “They can visit our website to ‘learn more about the corps’ and to register to volunteer. “We are able to confirm service hours for National Honor Society students as well as for any faith-based service requirements. We offer our 12th grade volunteers the opportunity to apply for one of three $500 scholarships if they complete 20 hours of service in their senior year.” 


“Our focus is always on the needs of others so our biggest ask would be to check in on your older neighbors and friends to ensure that they have what they need. Talk about our program in your social circles and how it benefits ALL AGES and find ways to give back to the community in small ways whenever you can,” MacClements says. 


In closing, let us embrace the inspiring journey of Fair Lawn for All Ages, a testament to the power of unity and compassion within our community. Together, let’s continue to build bridges across generations, lending a helping hand to those in need, and fostering a brighter future for all. 


Photos courtesy of Fair Lawn for All Ages

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