Volunteer Appreciation Week
Teri Schmitchen, Director of Volunteer Services
April 24, 2020
National Volunteer Appreciation Week is a time for organizations that depend on volunteers to show their focused appreciation. At Angela Hospice this is a favored time for us where we shower our valued volunteers with praise and appreciation for all they do, which is a lot.
Last year alone, our more than 400 volunteers provided nearly 30,000 hours of service to Angela Hospice and drove in excess of 115 thousand miles. And while those numbers are impressive, what our volunteers do is extraordinary. They accompany the dying. It’s a work of the heart and at times it’s hard work. They hold hands and listen when words have lost meaning, but a smile has not. They sit in the pain of our family members who share their sadness about the impending loss. They take a patient outside of his darkened room to bask in the warm sunshine. They listen to stories and they seek to understand how to help make this journey a bit easier for those we serve.
Not all of our volunteers work directly with patients and families, but they are just as critical to our mission. They enable us to extend resources to provide exceptional care to those under our wing. Now more than ever we feel the impact of our volunteers’ contributions. It’s felt in the emptiness of the hallways, the silence of the piano, the loneliness of the patients and the hurriedness of our administrative staff. Like many other organizations, Angela Hospice suspended all volunteer services in early March. We are counting down the days until we can welcome back our flock of volunteers to fly among us once more.
We pay tribute and honor to each of our Angela Hospice volunteers during this special week and every week. We’re not Angela Hospice without them.