Trained volunteers are at the heart of hospice. They serve as members of the hospice team, supporting and augmenting the work of the hospice professionals. Volunteers apply their individual interests and skills in ways that enrich the quality of life of hospice clients, their families, and their caretakers. Often, one of the most important contributions of our volunteers is simply to be there for clients and their families so they don’t feel isolated and alone.
Hospice volunteers go through approximately 20 hours of initial training that covers
- concepts of death, dying, and grief;
- communication skills;
- physical care and comfort measures;
- understanding diseases and conditions;
- psychosocial and spiritual dynamics of death and dying;
- the hospice family;
- managing personal stress;
- understanding the bereavement process; and
- opportunities for the hospice volunteer.
Experienced volunteers can do extra training to become vigil volunteers.
We offer volunteer training once a year, generally in the fall.
Volunteers work directly with clients in the following ways:
Volunteers also work in other, non client areas, including
- Support services provide companionship to clients by sitting with them, listening, reading, sharing about hobbies, and simply being a friend.
- Vigil volunteers are available to be with families and patients during the active dying process so they don’t have to be alone. They are available around the clock for up to three days and are available in homes, at the hospital, or in other care facilities.
- Errand assistance includes grocery shopping, picking up prescriptions and supplies, banking, etc.
- Homemaking tasks include light housekeeping, dishes, laundry, and meal preparation.
- office assistance,
- helping with our annual memorial,
- participating on committees or as a member of our community advisory board, and
- volunteer training.
Contact Jefferson Healthcare Hospice at 360-385-0610