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Long-term Care Ombudsman

Do you have a heart for older adults? Are you compassionate and friendly? Even if you have never been to a nursing home before, you can impact an older adult's life and help improve the care they receive.
If you are ready for a challenge, the Ombudsman Program may be for you! With a few hours each week, you can help area nursing home residents break through barriers to good care and pave the way to a meaningful volunteer experience for yourself!

Who we are

The MARC Long-Term Care (LTC) Ombudsman program is made up of trained volunteers and staff of the Area Agency on Aging. These individuals work with area long-term care residents to :

  • Improve the quality of care for long-term care residents.

  • Educate families, facility staff and residents about their rights.

  • Increase community awareness of and involvement in long-term care issues.

The local program serves Cass, Clay, Jackson, Platte and Ray Counties in Missouri. This region includes over 160 skilled nursing, assisted living and residential care facilities. The program represents and advocates for the needs of thousands of area long-term care residents every year. 

What we do

Volunteer ombudsmen visit an assigned long-term care facility, where they spend quality time getting to know the needs of residents. Ombudsmen form special bonds with residents and work to resolve concerns about care before they become crises. These valuable volunteers champion resident rights, act as liaisons between facility staff and residents, and provide a vital link between residents and the outside world.

The staff members of MARC’s Ombudsman Program are available to answer questions about nursing home care, provide information about resident rights and assist with decisions about long-term care placement. 


In the MARC Ombudsman Program, we have volunteer opportunities to suit every schedule. Here are some ways you can get involved:

P.A.V.E.: Personal Advocate Volunteers for the Elderly

  • Visit a small group of seniors at facilities close to where you live, who may not have any other visitor.

  • Set your own schedule for weekly visits.

  • Requires eight hours of free training and a criminal background check.

  • Optional training for advanced volunteer opportunities.

C.A.V.I.A.R.: Creating a Voice for Institutionalized Alzheimer’s Residents

  • Visit Alzheimer’s residents in special-care units.

  • Set your own schedule for weekly visits.

  • Requires 10 hours of free training and a criminal background check.

  • Optional training for advanced volunteer opportunities.

Long-Term Care Ombudsman

  • Serve as an advocate for residents in long-term care facilities and help resolve issues.

  • Visit a facility near you for one to four hours per week and complete a short summary form after each visit.

  • Requires 18 hours of free training and a criminal background check.

Additional volunteer roles

  • The staff of the Ombudsman Program at MARC supports involvement in the program in a variety of other roles. If you are not interested in visiting a facility regularly, we invite you to consider:

  • Developing family and/or resident councils.

  • Facilitating community involvement in long-term care facilities.

  • Reviewing legislation related to the long-term care industry and alerting MARC staff to relevant issues.

  • Educating the public and long-term care residents about their rights.

  • Writing community education articles about long-term care issues.

  • Promoting the program and/or recruiting volunteers.

  • Fundraising.

  • Assisting with clerical tasks in the office.

  • Serving on the Health, Advocacy and Supportive Services Committee of the MARC Commission on Aging. 

Ready to join our team?

Fill out our volunteer application. We’ll contact you soon to schedule training! 

If you have questions, please contact Michelle Brown at or 816/701-8265.

Have a concern?

If you have a concern about the care or quality of life of a long-term care facility resident, please feel free to share it with us by contacting Michelle Brown at 816/701-8265.