National Volunteer Week is an annual celebration dedicated to recognizing the many people who donate their time and energy to giving back to others. This year, National Volunteer Week in the United States was held on April 15-21, 2018, and Unity Hospice used that time to honor the many gifts that our hospice volunteers provide for patients and families.
Hospice volunteers are part of a highly coordinated care team that is designed to provide patients and their families with “the little things in life” that can mean the most. The medical staff is professionally trained to provide pain and symptom management, while the team of support services and volunteers tend to the patient’s social, emotional and spiritual self.
Nearly four decades ago, the hospice movement began as a grassroots volunteer-based service. Today, the volunteer aspect of hospice still exists, as it is federally mandated by Medicare that five percent of all patient care hours be provided by trained volunteers. This regulation reflects the vital role that volunteers have played in hospice care. It was the heart of their volunteerism that made hospice possible in the United States today.
Hospice volunteers provide a type of caring that goes beyond medical care. Volunteers achieve this through special techniques and programs including, but not limited to, comfort and companionship, personalized music programs, support from pets and veteran-focused projects. They bring compassion and caring to the lives of patients in need, encouraging them to live every moment of life to the fullest.
“Volunteers are the heart of hospice,” states Unity Hospice Corporate Director of Program Development Brenda McGarvey, who also oversees Unity Hospice’s volunteer program. “They help us to provide the best care possible for patients and their families. We at Unity Hospice are grateful to our volunteers for the compassion they provide for our patients and their families, and for the reminder of who we are and where we came from as a hospice organization.”
In 2017, the volunteers at Unity Hospice gave over 7,713 of hours of their time to help patients and families. In honor of National Volunteer Week 2018, Unity Hospice shines a light on the incredible volunteers that have changed the way dying persons are cared for in the United States.
To celebrate, the volunteer coordinators in each office coordinated gatherings and various recognition projects. One of those projects, as shown below, is a tribute video about some of our outstanding volunteers and what it is that connects them to hospice.
To learn more about Unity Hospice, or to find a hospice volunteer opportunity in your area, please visit our Volunteers page.
About Unity Hospice
Founded in 1992, Unity Hospice is a family owned and operated hospice and palliative care company committed to providing comprehensive care, support and education to people facing a life-limiting illness, their families and the community. Unity Hospice offers care of the highest quality by licensed and competent staff in accordance with laws & regulations and accepted standards of practice. With the dedication to make their patients comfortable, Unity Hospice provides an interdisciplinary approach to each individual and family, in which they go above and beyond everyday to meet their needs.