News Release

RSVP of the Red River Valley Approved to Conduct Study

By Elizabeth Tollefson on
Tuesday, January 2, 2018

The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) of the Red River Valley has been approved by the University of Minnesota’s Institutional Review Board to conduct a study in relation to their popular senior exercise class: Stay Active and Independent for Life (SAIL). SAIL

Partnering with the Metro Area Agency on Aging (MetroAAA) in St. Paul, RSVP will become part of a transformative effort titled, Juniper, broadening statewide impact on evidence-based health promotion programs.  The Juniper program aims to reduce costly medical interventions by encouraging self-management of health conditions, overall well-being and preventing falls.

The study, in conjunction with the MetroAAA contract, will encourage twice-per-week SAIL class attendance and will assess participant attitudes and incidence of falls prior to and following a session.  For each participant who completes 16 of 24 offered SAIL classes in a session, RSVP will be reimbursed $125.  The additional funding source will be directly fed back into the region’s SAIL program through training opportunities for volunteer leaders, volunteer recognition, weights and other supplies, and yearly class visits to ensure fidelity to the original SAIL model.

RSVP transitioned 31 Bone Builder classes into evidence-based SAIL during the summer/fall of 2016, in order to become compliant with Senior Corp grant guidelines.  More than 100 RSVP volunteers actively contribute hours to leading and assisting SAIL groups throughout Northwest Minnesota’s 7-County region.  The SAIL module, consisting of stretching, strengthening, balance, aerobic and education components, has been proven to reduce falls and promote independent living among America’s aging population.  Classes are free of charge with weights provided by RSVP.

Support for the program comes from state and federal funds along with United Way of Crookston, the University of Minnesota Crookston, and the counties of Polk, Norman, Kittson, Red Lake and Roseau.

For information on RSVP and/or SAIL, visit or call Program Director Tammy Frohlich at 218-281-8289.

About RSVP

RSVP connects volunteers age 55 and over with meaningful service opportunities that impact individuals and communities.  RSVP of the Red River Valley Volunteers put their skills, talents, and life experiences into motion for others, focusing on allowing seniors to remain living independently through grocery, handyman and meal delivery services, assisting children with literacy skills and food security for all persons. 

RSVP is a Senior Corp program, administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the federal agency for volunteering, service and civic engagement.  CNCS engages millions of Americans in citizen service through its AmeriCorps and Senior Corp programs and leads the nation's volunteer and service efforts.  For more information, visit

The University of Minnesota Crookston now delivers 34 bachelor's degree programs, 22 minors, and 40 areas of emphasis on campus as well as 14 degree programs entirely online.  These degrees are offered in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of 1,800 undergraduates from more than 20 countries and 40 states, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit


Elizabeth Tollefson

University Relations


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