Volunteers do not give of their time hoping for reward or recognition. They give it freely to help support, encourage and assist their terminally ill neighbors, friends and complete strangers. Hospice of Aroostook (HOA), a program of Visiting Nurses of Aroostook (VNA), is grateful for its 87 volunteers that provided 2,133 hours of service in numerous capacities in 2012.
“We would not have a hospice program without our volunteers,” says Robin Haynes, HOA Volunteer Manager. “Medicare requires that 5% of all direct hospice patient care is provided by volunteers. Annually, our volunteers exceed that percentage. They are a dedicated group and committed to serving those in need.”
Volunteers are carefully matched to patients and families by geography, services needed, availability, and common interests. While most HOA volunteers work directly with hospice patients and families, others choose to use their administrative gifts to help in the office and/or assist with fundraising efforts for the program.
“One group of volunteers make memory quilts for our hospice families,” explains Haynes. “The memory quilts are free to family members and we hear over and over again how much they mean to the recipients. The volunteers meet once a week to make these beautiful quilts.”
Hospice of Aroostook provided end-of-life care for nearly 200 patients and their families last year. Anyone with an interest in learning more about hospice care can view two family testimonials online at www.easternmainehomecare.org. For more information about volunteer opportunities, please contact Robin Haynes at 498-2578.
A part of the Eastern Maine HomeCare Family and a member of EMHS, VNA/HOA work to ensure the highest quality home care is available to those who need it. For more information about our home health and hospice services, please visit www.easternmainehomecare.org or call our EMHC’s Patient Referral Line toll-free at 1-866-591-8843.