8/6/2021 For many, the past year has allowed a time of reflection about the value of life and what is truly important. Those who are looking to give back and help others may find fulfillment in joining the Family Hospice Huntingdon County volunteer team to support patients with life-limiting illnesses and their caregivers.
Family Hospice volunteers embrace the opportunity and privilege to support patients and their families through a significant and inevitable season of life. This involvement takes many forms depending on the strengths and interests of volunteers. For TyJuan Hartman of Huntingdon, that means visiting with patients in their homes and reaching out to bereaved family members.
While patient visits were suspended when the COVID-19 pandemic began, in-person services are in the process of being reinstated with appropriate safety protocols in place. In the meantime, Hartman has been connecting with families through phone calls, notes and cards.
After experiencing hospice care briefly for her husband and talking with a good friend and committed volunteer, Hartman began her hospice volunteer journey with the Huntingdon County team six years ago. Since then she has served families in both Family Hospice and bereavement and has grown to love many aspects of her volunteer work.
“I really enjoy the personal visits, listening to the patients and family members, and getting to know and grow new friends. I love being part of the program and always seem to receive more than I give,” she says.
In addition to the traditional volunteer roles of patient companionship, caregiver respite and support of bereaved loved ones, Family Hospice is looking for volunteers with specialized skills and interests who would like to serve patients and families in this challenging season of life. Family Hospice is seeking volunteers with experience in music, creative expression through art projects, Reiki and pet-facilitated visits.
Volunteer involvement is determined by the individual’s skills, desires and schedule. The time commitment for a volunteer can vary from several times per month to weekly. Volunteer Coordinators provide specialized training for new volunteers, including the opportunity to partner with active volunteers.
“Our Family Hospice volunteers are truly the heart of hospice – the ‘Silent Angels’,” shares Volunteer Coordinator Catherine Zimmerman-Moyer. “Our volunteers give generously of their time as they listen with open hearts, building lasting relationships with families they meet in hospice and bereavement services. They are the face of compassion and make a difference by choosing to live with purpose!”
“Our wonderful volunteers are really the heart of Family Hospice,” says Carole Palmer, Volunteer and Bereavement Coordinator. “They are the day-to-day hands and feet that make it possible for Family Hospice to minister love and compassion to our patients and their families. It is an honor to work with our volunteers who give so much of themselves to comfort others!”
To learn more about Family Hospice volunteer opportunities and requirements, contact the Volunteer Coordinator in your region. Apply online to become a Family Hospice volunteer.
Bedford, Blair, and Cambria Counties
Centre, Huntingdon, and Mifflin Counties