Hospice of Mercy Volunteer Program
Hospice volunteers offer visits to patients, wherever they reside. Our ultimate goal is to develop relationships and provide support to patients and their families during a critical time in their lives.
Volunteers are an essential part of the Hospice of Mercy program and play a key role in patient care. In fact, Medicare mandates that at least 5% of all hospice patient care hours must be provided by trained hospice volunteers. This regulation recognizes the vital role that volunteers play in the hospice philosophy of care and ensures that a hospice program has roots deep in the community.
Volunteers are a key element of support and comfort Hospice of Mercy provides to patients and their families during a critical time in their lives. It is yet another example of The Mercy Touch that emphasizes the caring in the healthcare Mercy provides.
Our volunteers go anywhere a patient calls home, including nursing homes or assisted living facilities. Their service is a tremendous help to families, as well as rewarding, fulfilling work for the volunteers.
How Hospice of Mercy Volunteers Help
Hospice of Mercy volunteers must complete training prior to placement. Hospice of Mercy volunteers are matched 1:1 with a patient and/or family and help with:
- Visiting with patients and families
- Respite care - staying with the patient while the care giver runs errands, goes to an appointment, etc.
- Light housekeeping
- Medication delivery - volunteers pick up medications at Mercy Medical Center and deliver them to the patient
- Run errands
- Pet therapy - certified pet therapy dogs and their owners visit patients and provide pet companionship
- Eleventh-hour volunteers stay with the patient and families as the patient enters into the final hours of his or her life (Additional training required)
- Bereavement volunteers assist the Hospice of Mercy bereavement staff
Bereavement volunteers are sensitive listeners to family members after a death has occurred. They stay in contact through phone and may accompany family members to grief support and social events.
Bereavement volunteers are trained and overseen by bereavement counselors to provide assistance to survivors as they progress through the stages of grief. The goal of the bereavement volunteer is to help family members adjust to their lives after a loss.
Eleventh-hour volunteers provide support to patients and their families as the patient enters into the final of his or her life.
Hospice of Mercy office volunteers help out in the Hospice office with mailings, clerical duties and greeting visitors. Training is provided by the Hospice of Mercy office staff.
Patient/family volunteers provide many essential services. Volunteers are trained and willing to listen and respond to families needs with understanding and empathy. Patient/family volunteers help maintain a sense of normalcy and quality of life for the patient and family. Tasks may include companionship for a patient, respite for patient caregivers, running errands or medication deliveries.
Prayer Shawl Ministry
Volunteers take prayer shawls for our patients. Prayer Shawls are given to Hospice patients by the Hospice of Mercy Chaplains. You do not need to go through training to be a Prayer Shawl volunteer. You do not need to know how to knit or crochet. The Hospice of Mercy volunteer office has patterns for the prayer shawls.
Other Volunteer Opportunities
Want to make a difference? There are many opportunities for you to use your gifts and talents at the Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy. Some of the opportunities include:
- Gardeners to weed, plant, etc
- Pianists to play the baby grand piano
- Greeters to greet people as they come to visit
- Patient/family volunteers willing to listen and respond to families needs with understanding and empathy
- Library volunteers
To learn more about Hospice of Mercy volunteer opportunities, please call Hospice of Mercy Volunteer Coordinator at (319) 398-6628 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.