The Serenity Volunteer
By volunteering for only a few hours a week or a month, you can make a difference in the lives of patients and their families. Volunteers are the heart of Serenity, providing an integral dimension of end of life care.
What is Volunteerism?
Volunteerism is the offering of one’s time in the service of others; it is a life-changing, personal journey.
Who can volunteer?
Volunteers are working professionals, high school or college students, retired, semi-retired, or even those who are homebound. Volunteers are of varied cultures and backgrounds, or have perhaps experienced hospice care through a friend or relative.
- Impact the lives of the families in which we serve
- Contribute a wealth of personal knowledge and experience to families in crisis
- Personal satisfaction in helping others
- Emotional and spiritual growth
How can I help?
You can make a difference in the lives of patients and their families by providing patient/family visits to provide support and reassurance, or you may choose to help indirectly by running errands or providing regular phone calls from your home. Active listening is the single most valuable tool; it communicates a willingness to hear and understand the other with empathy, while allowing the patient to be heard.
Direct patient support – Visit assisted living or skilled nursing facilities, provide companionship and emotional support to the patient and caregiver, assist patients with arts and crafts projects, or provide supportive calls to offer reassurance
Bereavement support – Provide phone calls to bereaved families, assist with bereavement support meetings
Administrative support – Assist with mail outs, filing, answering phones
Public relations – Organize special community events, such as memorial services and health fairs. Public Relations Volunteers serve as ambassadors to the community
How much time is required of a volunteer?
Any amount of time devoted to the patient or family, whether it is by phone or at the bedside, is a positive experience. Usually, a volunteer spends anywhere from one hour on a visit, to two or three hours, depending on your availability. It is determined entirely by you.
What if my situation changes, and I have less time, or even no time available to volunteer?
A volunteer has his/her own daily responsibilities to family and home, which naturally changes with time. The volunteer need only to decline an assignment until a later time.
How does the request for a volunteer come about?
The family is informed of the availability, but not guarantee, of volunteers when admitted to our service. The caregiver may call with a request, or the nurse may report the need for a volunteer at the weekly team meeting.
Will I have to travel any distance from home?
The request will be in your general area and one which is suitable for you.