AARP Kentucky Community Service Award goes to Lexington man for helping homeless

Steve Polston – who has spent years helping the homeless in Lexington – is the 2015 winner of the AARP Kentucky Andrus Award for Community Service. And the New Life Day Center, a non-profit facility founded by Polston, is a big winner too – earning a $2,000 check from AARP Kentucky.

The Andrus Award – named after AARP founder Ethel Percy Andrus – is given annually to an outstanding older Kentuckian who is making a powerful difference in his/her community through volunteer work, wrote Rachel Fautz in a story on AARP.

“We are thrilled to recognize Steve Polston with the most celebrated volunteer award given by AARP,” said AARP Kentucky State Director, Ron Bridges. “Steve has spent an incredible amount of time and energy giving back to his community. His work embodies the motto of our founder, Dr. Andrus — “to serve, not to be served.”

For almost four years, Steve has volunteered his time and skills for the New Life Day Center. He researched for years how to best serve his community before opening the Center, a daytime connecting point for the Lexington homeless. The Center helps get the homeless out of the weather and off of the street during the day, helps them find jobs and housing, and provides transportation, storage lockers, and access to computers and phones, among other things.

Steve is a great motivator and works with an all-volunteer staff. He is constantly in “fundraising mode” to keep the Center serving those in need. New Life has touched over 3,000 lives, averaging 150 clients off the street each day and 6,000 van trips a year. In addition to his work at the Center, Steve has served on numerous non-profit boards, including time as chairman of the Lighthouse Ministries and board chairman of Sleepless in Lexington.

“Steve Polston’s work in the Lexington community embodies the spirit of the AARP Andrus Award for Community Service”, said Jim Kimbrough, AARP Kentucky state president. “His incredible devotion to service can inspire us all.”