If you have a caring heart and a few hours a week to share with people who need your help, consider volunteering for the Visiting Nurse Association of Erie County. VNA needs volunteers to attend the non-medical needs of both hospice and home health care patients. In addition, volunteers are needed to help with clerical work, fundraisers and special events.
VNA hospice volunteers participate in a special training program to prepare them to be sources of caring and comfort. They are educated about hospice philosophy, attitudes on death and dying, physical needs and care of a person at the end of life, grief, bereavement and the role of the volunteer in hospice care. Volunteer training sessions are held throughout the year.
Volunteers receive ongoing education and in-service training to keep them informed and knowledgeable about the most recent advances in hospice care.
Volunteer duties may include:
- Providing emotional support and companionship for patients and family members through phone calls and personal visits
- Providing respite care relief for caregivers for short periods of time to allow caregivers the opportunity to tend to personal business or recreation
- Assisting patients with practical tasks that may include running errands, shopping for essentials, getting a simple meal ready or light housekeeping
- Building relationships, including spending time with patients and family members in conversation, reading, prayer or similar activities to help enhance quality of life
- Assisting in bereavement and grief support by making visits and phone calls and sending cards to those who are grieving
Helping facilitate grief education and support groups that are provided to VNA families and the community free of charge.
For more information or to volunteer, contact the VNA at 454-2831 or download an application at www.erievna.org.