VolunteerDownload a volunteer application
Volunteers play a vital role on the Sentara RMH Hospice team. Nationwide, Hospices’ are mandated by Medicare to have at least 5% of their hours be done by volunteers, and here at Sentara RMH Hospice we are proud to say that 13% of our hours are done by volunteers. We currently have 53 active volunteers, with 12 new volunteers in our training class.
Hospice volunteers are compassionate, sensitive people, many of whom have been through a hospice experience with someone dear to them. It is recommended that someone wait a year after the death of a loved one before becoming a hospice volunteer.
There are numerous ways that volunteers can be utilized. See types of volunteers listed below. To find out more or to schedule an interview call our volunteer coordinator: Carmen Schrock-Hurst 433-4276. All volunteers are invited to a monthly support luncheon and to annual in-service events. Volunteers are considered a critical part of the hospice team, and their observations and feedback are valued by the whole team. Volunteers who go through training are asked to give an average of 4 hours a week for at least a year.
Provide one on one support to our patients and families by visiting in the home/facility where the patient resides. Volunteers read to patients, provide friendly visits, run errands, mow lawns, pick up prescriptions, watch TV, make puzzles, help with end of life review, listen to anticipatory grief, and give caregivers a well deserved break. Because these volunteers are going out into patient’s homes they receive extensive training (25 hours) and they are also subject to criminal background checks and TB tests. Reference letters and an interview are also required.
Some patient/family volunteers have additional training in how to provide vigil music at the bedside as a patient nears death.
Provide emotional support over the telephone to recently bereaved family members. This job can be done from your own home. Training, supervision and ongoing support are offered by the hospice bereavement coordinator, Carmen Schrock-Hurst 433-4276. Training, references and an interview required.
Assist with daily office work, data entry, mailings, chart review and other tasks in support of the day to day operation of the hospice office. A shorter version of the training, as well as references and an interview are required.
Sewing memory bears
Sentara RMH hospice offers hospice families the chance to have a memory bear made out of some of the clothing from their deceased family member. Volunteers sew the memory bears in their own home, and thus help to provide comfort to grieving children and loved ones. If you would like to join our memory making team, please call 433-4276.
Special Event Volunteers
Help to run errands and provide extra hands on help for special events like community fundraisers, community education and awareness events, annual staff and volunteer events, the national hospice teleconference, and the annual memorial service.
Are ordained clergy who assist the hospice chaplain in providing spiritual support to patients and families. The same orientation is required as that given to the patient/family volunteers, with additional supervision given by the hospice chaplain.
Thank You Note Writer Volunteers
Hospice receives many donations from people within our community. We like to acknowledge each donation with a handwritten thank you note, which is a true rarity in this day and age. Note writer volunteers can give time to hospice from the comfort of their own home and at a time that suits their own schedule. Supplies and a script are provided.
Benefits of Volunteering
Studies show that people who volunteer actually live longer and healthier lives! As a volunteer you will join the hospice family of dedicated staff and other volunteers. You will make new friends, learn new skills, and in facing the challenges of hospice work will learn to embrace the gift of each day and to live it to its fullest. Many of our volunteers say that they receive back from their patients and families far more than they give. Hospice is about living!