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New York City Honorees(Page 3)


Odessa Jones was born in South Carolina and moved to New York with her family when she was 17. She subsequently graduated from Bronx Community College. Odessa is the mother of three children and worked with pre-school children for 30 years. Always open to new things, Odessa just returned from a March trip to China.

Odessa Jones Pic

Odessa has been a New York City Department for the Aging (DFTA) Health Promotion volunteer for a dozen years. She is one of two energetic STAY WELL exercise leaders, the other being Voncile Mallory, working at the JASA Co-op City Senior Center in the Bronx. Odessa has participated in many of the special programs offered by the Unit, and donated several hours of her time to develop and test Winning Wellness, a health education game that is being developed by DFTA.

When she started volunteering, Odessa was grateful for the blessings that she and her family had received, and she wanted to give something back. After three decades of service to young children, Odessa decided that in retirement, she wanted to do something for seniors.

Odessa believes that "when you give sunshine to others, you get sunshine back."


Voncile Mallory is originally from Alabama, but has lived in New York for several decades.

Voncile Mallory  Pic

Voncile has been a New York City Department for the Aging (DFTA) Health Promotion volunteer for under a decade. She is one of two energetic STAY WELL exercise leaders working at the JASA Co-op City Senior Center in the Bronx. Voncile has participated in many of the special programs offered by the Unit, and donated several hours of her time to develop and test Winning Wellness, a health education game that is being developed by DFTA. Voncile came forward from the STAY WELL exercise class when the group needed a replacement for one of its two original leaders. Voncile works with Odessa Jones and the two combine to offer both the STAY WELL class, as well as a line dancing class at the center. Voncile leads the line dancing class.

Voncile has volunteered with DFTA for approximately ten years.

When Voncile started volunteering, she wanted to do something that she would enjoy; something that would give her the opportunity to socialize with people.

Voncile enjoys seeing the "smiling faces" of people in their 60s, 80s and 90s, many of whom tell her that the STAY WELL exercise class makes them very happy.