On November 22, 2023

Startup aims to connect retirees with Killington employment, volunteerism

 

By Katy Savage

As businesses grapple with worker shortage, two Killngton weekenders are launching a startup to connect retirees with  jobs and volunteer organizations to ease the burden. 

The startup, called GoForIt, is coming next month and aims to connect Killington businesses, including ski shops and restaurants and charities with people looking for per diem work.   

“I’ve always wanted to build this thing because I just know so many people who wake up and say, ‘I wish I could do this. I wish I could do that. I just don’t know how to,’” said cofounder Bernie Horovitz.

The platform is open for people of all ages, though Horovitz anticipates the older population will use it most. 

“There’s so many people that are retiring early and they still have energy, they still desire to do things,” Horovitz, 58, said.  

He envisions retirees looking at the GoForIt website in the morning and picking a job or organization to volunteer for that day. Job seekers, whom he calls “flexors,” will need to complete a background check and they’ll be paid by the business as a freelancer. 

Horovitz said it’s a way to help retirees stay engaged.

“If you’re engaged, that’s just better for you and your health, your physicality, your mental and emotional wellbeing,” Horovitz said.

The U.S. Census says about 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 each day and Americans are retiring at earlier ages, leading to shortages in the workforce.

“There’s just not enough people working, so there is a huge demand,” Horovitz said. 

Horovitz cofounded GoForIt with Anne DiSorbo.  

Horovitz worked in insurance for 10 years for companies like Uber and Airbnb before retiring in July. 

“I was the guy behind the scenes helping with that work,” Horovitz said.  “I realized I can take that knowledge and build my own business.” 

Horovitz, who lives in Connecticut, frequently comes to Killington and volunteers as a summer host for Killington Resort, where he walks mountain bike trails to ensure safety. In the winter, he’s a volunteer ambassador at the resort, helping people on the slopes. Horovitz has also volunteered for various kitchens, barbecues and charity events.

DiSorbo, 58, is an accountant. She had an accounting practice when her children were small, then she worked for her husband’s financial advisory firm.

“I call myself the ‘queen of the gig’,” DiSorbo said.

After years of dreaming about the business, they started researching the market on July 1 this year. They started onboarding businesses on Nov. 1.

“We’re hoping word of mouth spreads quickly,” Horovitz said. 

Horovitz hopes to have 40-50 businesses on the platform and a couple hundred flexors in Vermont. He wants to be in New Hampshire and Maine by summer and then expand to other resort towns, including Colorado and South Carolina.

“We’re going to stay out of the big cities,” Horovitz said. “We want to stay more rural. We’re really focusing on that flexibility and making their life more fulfilled.”

DiSorbo said the startup will be mutually beneficial for businesses and flexors. 

“GoForIt isn’t going to solve all the problems, but we feel that we’ll be able to help a lot of the businesses fill their daily needs for various shifts as well as volunteer organizations,” DiSorbo said. 

For more information, visit: goforitgigs.com.

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