Why We Love Our
Beacon of Hope Hospice Volunteers
The hospice movement was started in the United States in 1974 and developed with volunteer doctors, nurses, social workers, chaplains, and laypeople. That initial volunteer spirit remains in today’s hospice programs, with Medicare requiring hospice programs to utilize volunteers. The importance of volunteers to our hospice team cannot be overstated. Without the volunteers our Hospice could not provide the support and services needed to enhance the quality of life for our patients and their families and/or caregivers. As a quick refresher, volunteering—also known as volunteerism—is when you give your time to help another person, organization, or cause. Volunteer opportunities include both in-person volunteering and virtual volunteering. Volunteers may provide assistance in the hospice’s ancillary and office activities as well as in the direct patient care services, and/or help patients and families with household chores, shopping, and companionship.
There are many reasons to Volunteer. First and foremost, volunteering is important because it helps you make a difference in the world. Almost everyone says they want to make the world a better place, but volunteers are taking concrete actions to do just that. Whether it’s cleaning up at a patient’s home; reading, putting together puzzles, offering companionship, or just being present; helping at a marketing event; writing letters with patients to their family & friends; or working with patients to create a life history to give to their loved ones as a treasured heirloom. Let’s face it, volunteering lets you truly impact the world and your community in a positive way.
Volunteering also gives you the chance to learn new things and have the opportunity to enhance your relationship and communication skills. Most likely, you’ll be working in a new capacity that is unfamiliar to you which will allow you to gain new skills and grow as a person. For example, you may help with planning a large event, providing comfort to an elderly individual, deliver groceries, or read to someone. Between the people you are serving, the other volunteers, and the staff at our hospice, there area lot of opportunities for growth as an individual. It is important for College students through elderly persons all with a desire to give back.
Another reason why volunteering is so vital is that it provides you the opportunity to connect with other people. Often, the service you perform while volunteering allows you to meet new people that you may not have met otherwise. Some of our volunteers choose to assist a tour Bereavement Groups where we have people come together to work through their grief with others going through similar emotions. Usually, these individuals have something in common with you and you can bond over the important work you are doing. This can lead to new friendships and even future opportunities since you are constantly meeting, interacting, and networking with new people.
Volunteering is also critic alto nearly all hospice organizations and charities. With limited budgets on both accounts, we try to use as much money as possible to carry out our missions. That restricts how many employees are hired, relying on volunteers to fill the gap and perform the rest of the vital work that needs to be done is a great way to accomplish these goals. It has been reported that last year over 63 million Americans volunteered in some way which replaced moneys spent and virtually contributed$190+billion worth of Volunteer work in their communities!
The importance of volunteering doesn’t just involve the work you are doing to make the world a better place. It’s also important because it’s good for you! Research shows that volunteering is beneficial for both your body and mind. This is because many volunteer opportunities involve physical activity, which helps you get your body moving and can lead to lower blood pressure, along with other health benefits. Volunteering can also lead to reduced levels of stress, help deal with anxiety, improve your self-confidence, and help to make you happier overall. While these benefits are a nice bonus, your main reason for volunteering should always be to help make the world a better place.
If you would like to learn more about what we do; find out how to become a volunteer; offer your craft-making, quilting, sewing, or knitting abilities; make a donation of yarn or quilting materials; or to apply for one of our available volunteer positions please contact the Beacon of Hope Hospice closest to you and ask for the Volunteer Coordinator today!
Written by: Mike Saad
Corporate Director of Support Services