Schneck Hospice is seeking caring and compassionate volunteers to provide physical, emotional and spiritual comfort while allowing patients and their families to retain as much autonomy and dignity as possible.
“Hospice is about improving the quality of the patient’s life,” said Denise Swegles, director of Schneck Home Services. “Staying at home is very important for our hospice patients and their families.”
Schneck Hospice is seeking volunteers for every day of the week, and volunteers are able to set their own hours.
Schneck Hospice offers volunteer opportunities that range from direct contact with patients to providing administrative and fundraising support for the organization. Volunteers with direct patient contact typically work Monday through Friday in the afternoon or early evening and occasionally Saturday and Sunday. Duties may include:
- Support for patients’ responsibilities, including visiting, reading, taking walks, writing letters, interpreting for those who do not speak English, bringing in music and supervising therapeutic visits with pets. Volunteers with necessary certification also can provide massage therapy.
- Respite and support for family members. Volunteers can allow family caregivers the opportunity to take care of necessary errands, exercise, go to church or simply have some time to themselves.
- Bereavement support programs. Hospice volunteers can work closely with the bereavement staff. Duties may include conducting a support group or serving as a facilitator, serving refreshments or helping with mailings to families.
- Administrative and fundraising volunteers generally work in the afternoons any time between noon and 4 p.m. and perform duties such as making phone calls to patients or organizing projects for volunteers. Fundraising responsibilities can range from preparing mailings or thank-you letters to organizing fundraising events and contacting potential donors.
“Individuals who want to share their special skills are also encouraged to volunteer, such as those in lawn care and landscaping,” Swegles said. “Notaries, barbers and beauticians often volunteer their services to patients. Musicians often volunteer to play at memorial services. Some volunteers make quilts or blankets to give to patients and families.”