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Volunteers have always been a critical part of our organization; even before the hospital was open volunteers were helping to raise money to build this community hospital. More than 50 years later, volunteers continue to be one of our greatest resources and a daily presence throughout NYGH. We have approximately 900 volunteers.
In my first few months here, I have enjoyed meeting several dozen of our volunteers and I have been struck by their passion for the organization, the stories they share for why they volunteer and their always warm, welcoming manner.
This week, April 7-13, is National Volunteer Week. It's a time where we thank the volunteers for their contributions in making a world of difference for our patients, residents and families as well as staff and physicians.
From running the Gift Shop and donating all the money back to the hospital, to helping patients find their way through our halls and comforting residents at Seniors' Health Centre, our volunteers play an integral role in helping us care for our patients and residents.
As the number of beds grew at our new Reactivation Care Centre, so did our volunteers. We now have a volunteer reactivation team to support our 30 patients and their families.
A few months ago, Volunteer Services launched a pilot program on our Palliative Care unit and volunteers received training from Circle of Care, a non-profit home care provider offering services that improve well-being, independence, and quality of life. Volunteers visit patients with their "Comfort Carts" that have music, books, and other items to help patients feel more at home. Feedback received from patients and families as well as staff and physicians has been very positive.
These are only just a few of the programs our volunteers are supporting while making a world of difference.
As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, let's remember to say "thanks" for all the great work they do. Volunteering is noble, generous and kind and we are so fortunate to have each and every single volunteer choose North York General Hospital to donate their time.
President and CEO
April 9, 2019