GILCHRIST

GILCHRIST

Volunteering During the Pandemic

March 12, 2021, Uncategorized

volunteering during the pandemic
Mary Antonucci, Gilchrist Volunteer
Services Manager

Our volunteers are an important part of our team, and they bring so much joy to the families we serve—and to all of us! We’ve missed working alongside them in-person over the past year, but we are truly awed by their continued commitment to the work we do and volunteering during the pandemic.

While we’ve suspended all our in-person patient care roles, we have found new ways to keep our volunteers engaged “virtually” and many of them have adapted to new technology and doing things a little differently.

Over the past year, our volunteers have:

  • Hand sewn nearly 6,000 cloth masks for patients and families, purchasing the fabric, elastic and other material themselves
  • Conducted End-of-life Salutes using Zoom, or standing outside a window
  • Planned our annual Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans event, which will be held virtually again this year
  • Made cards of encouragement for our admission nurses
  • Became Phone Buddies to support patients and the families of our RCC patients
  • Delivered food boxes to our Elder Medical Care families through our new Pantry to Porch program
  • Helped prepare for our bi-weekly PPE Hub by putting together COVID-19 testing kits, sorted gowns and masks, and refilled hand-sanitizer bottles
  • Led virtual Bereavement support groups, using Zoom
  • Assisted our Quality department by making phone calls to ensure our teams are wearing their PPE in the homes

We are so grateful for the help of our amazing volunteers! We are slowly bringing volunteers back and at this point, some of our administrative volunteers have returned to help us make admission packets and to provide some other light office work. Our veteran volunteers will soon be conducting Salutes to Service again, and when the weather is nice, the Music Support volunteers will be able to perform outside for our patients in the Gilchrist Centers. We look forward to the day when it is safe enough to bring everyone back, but until then, our hearts are warmed knowing that our team of compassionate and dedicated volunteers are still engaged and ready to be of service. It is truly an honor to work with these amazing individuals.

To learn more about our volunteer program, visit: gilchristcares.org/volunteer. Please note that we are still suspending all in-person volunteer activity at this time.

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