On-AirVirginia This Morning


Age My Way: Martha Rollins

Posted at 12:33 PM, May 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-11 12:33:47-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Older adults in the City of Richmond enrich the communities in which they live, play, volunteer, lead, mentor, work and raise their families. Just as each community is unique so are the older adults who live and age within them. This year’s theme for Older Americans Month - “Age My Way” embodies the idea that everyone is unique and there is not a “right or “wrong” way to age. Aging is as diverse as the communities where our older adults are aging.

The City of Richmond Office of Aging and Disability Services will feature each week older adults who are engaged and playing vital roles within their communities. Beyond the health benefits of aging in place or within communities, older adults can provide infinite wisdom, historical perspective and tend to volunteer more than any other group which helps persons of all ages.

The City of Richmond Office of Aging & Disability Services strives to promote independence and enhance the dignity of Richmond’s older adults, individuals with disabilities and their families through a community-based system of opportunities, services and protections; to ready younger generations to enjoy their later years; and to help society and government plan and prepare for the changing demographics.

Older Americans Month is led by the Administration on Aging, part of the Administration for Community Living.

Join us as we highlight older adults who are entrepreneurs, civically involved, working and staying active in the City of Richmond.

Martha Rollins, a Community Activist and City of Richmond resident for over 50 years has worked to bring awareness to and address problems in the area of social justice and economic development. Ms. Rollins is a native of Martinsville, Virginia. She came to Richmond with her husband Randy and soon began her passion for social justice. Working alongside others she helped to fight racial discrimination in the area of real estate. She and others of the Carillon neighborhood near Byrd Park fostered a culture of friendship to have their neighborhood become and remain diverse.

Ms. Rollins founded the faith-based non-profit organization Boaz & Ruth whose mission it is to work in partnership with the neighbors in Highland Park, with the criminal justice system, with other nonprofits and government agencies, as well as with individuals and faith-based and academic communities to empower, rebuild and connect the lives of men and women needing a second chance through relationships, transitional jobs and training. Ms. Rollins is committed to a core belief that everyone is a “Boaz” with gifts and everyone is a “Ruth” with needs. The important word in the name is the connecting word “and”. When we “live in the AND” both individuals and communities are transformed.

For 30 years Ms. Rollins was also owner and operator of Martha’s Mixtures an antique shop located in Carytown. Today at 79 year old, she is co-founder of Coming to the Table RVA Affiliate Group that provides leadership, resources, and a supportive environment for all who wish to acknowledge and heal wounds from racism that is rooted in the United States' history of slavery.

Ms. Rollins has 3 adult children and 5 grandchildren. She feels an important part of aging is to continue to be engaged with younger people, having younger friends in which to listen and learn. She believes it is important to remain physically active doing something you like enough to help keep the body functioning.

The City of Richmond Office of Aging & Disability Services recognizes Ms. Martha Rollins as an example of this year’s Older Americans Month theme – “Age My Way."