United Way of Northwest Vermont
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Bone Builders

Strength for healthy aging.

RSVP Bone Builders is an exercise program designed to prevent (and even reverse) the negative effects of osteoporosis. The program is based on research conducted and published by Tufts University which shows that strength training just twice a week dramatically reduces the risk of fractures due to the disease. Study participants gained bone density, became stronger and improved their balance. These health gains significantly reduced the incidence of falling. Bone Builders classes fill a vital need for regular physical exercise as well as increased social interaction, both well-known components of healthy aging.

Find a Bone Builders class in your area by clicking here. No need to call ahead — just show up!

1 in 7 Vermont men and 1 in 3 Vermont women aged 50+ will break a bone due to osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a painful and costly problem among Vermont seniors. Vermont residents are the second oldest in the country (second only to Maine) and our population is aging rapidly. The physical, emotional, and financial impacts of a broken hip can be devastating. Many older Vermonters live alone, in rural settings, on limited incomes. The cost of accessing weight training classes, as well as the travel involved, often make attending classes out of reach for those who need them most.


We are strategically expanding the program into more communities throughout Chittenden, Franklin and Grand Isle counties. We will continue to recruit and certify more volunteer instructors, secure additional donated class sites, buy weights for class locations as needed, provide ongoing learning opportunities for current volunteer leaders, advertise the classes and hold informational meetings at each site to explain the program, schedule class days and times.

Become a volunteer instructor. 

Contact Bone Builders Coordinator Danielle Schwer at danielle@unitedwaynwvt.org or (802) 861-7821 for more information.



United Way recruits and trains all volunteer Bone Builders class leaders, seeks out community partner locations, publicizes classes and offers continuing educational support to class leaders. At this time, our partners are the facilities who are donating their space for class use, free of charge:

Ascension Church

Bolton Fire Department

Cathedral Square Corporation

Champlain Housing Trust

Charlotte Senior Center

Community Senior Center of Richmond, Huntington and Bolton

CORE Adult Center

Enosburg Fire Department

Essex Parks and Recreation

Fairfield Community Center

Franklin Homestead & Carriage House

Harbor Village Senior Communities

Heineberg Community Senior Center

Milton Grange

Pinecrest at Essex

Shelburne United Methodist Church

South Burlington Senior Center

St. Jude’s Parish Hall – Hinesburg

St. Paul’s United Methodist Church – St. Albans

St. Thomas Catholic Church – Underhill

Swanton Public Library

Taft Farms Senior Living

Town Meadow Senior Housing

Williston Place

Winooski Senior Center

class schedule

United Way of Northwest Vermont*** September 16, 2022