Volunteer at HSL Hospice Care

Volunteer Opportunities at HSL Hospice Care

We welcome your interest in our Volunteer Program – Yad b’ Yad (hand-in-hand)! Volunteers are the heart of a hospice program and Bikkur Holim (visiting the sick) is among the highest of Mitzvot (commandments).  Hospice places extraordinary value on the selfless sharing of time, energy, and compassion with others at the most vulnerable time of life.

What Does a Volunteer Do?
Volunteers provide assistance to patients and family caregivers. Tasks may vary from sitting quietly with the patient or engaging in conversation, reading aloud, letter writing, reminiscing, and playing an instrument.  Just being present with a patient is a vital and welcome task.  A volunteer’s presence may provide much needed respite periods for the caregiver to take care of themselves, their home, and other members of their family.  You might be asked to prepare a light meal, provide transportation, or take care of some light shopping.  Additionally, there may be times the Hospice office will need help for administrative tasks, such as answering phones, mailings, or preparing for an event. 

How Do I Become a Volunteer?
Acceptance to the program requires a written application, interview, reference checks, and successful completion of a 20-hour training program.  This training will qualify you to competently provide services following the standards of Medicare and the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, as well as our own unique focus on Jewish values and practices.  Training will be conducted in groups over several weeks.

How Much Time Will I Give?
Volunteers are asked to provide a minimum of 2 hours of service each week.  Most often, volunteers visit one time weekly with a patient.  Timing of the visits is flexible and is determined by the mutual needs of the patient, family, and your personal schedule.  Timely documentation of visits is required of all volunteers.

What Support Do I Receive?
Our Volunteer Coordinator is responsible to recruit, train, assign, and support our volunteers.  The Volunteer Coordinator will be your sounding board for all concerns as they relate to the inevitable difficult emotions that arise with this work.  Continuing education and training opportunities will be offered to meet the needs of volunteers.  Regularly scheduled Volunteer Gatherings will allow for sharing experiences and learning..

How to Apply- 6 week training begins in May 2014
Dowload the HSL Hospice Care Volunteer Application, fill it out and email to Sara Smolover, Volunteer Coordinator at Sarasmolover@hsl.harvard.edu

Support
Our Volunteer Coordinator is responsible to recruit, train, assign, and support our volunteers.  The Volunteer Coordinator will be your sounding board for all concerns as they relate to the inevitable difficult emotions that arise with this work.  Continuing education and training opportunities will be offered to meet the needs of volunteers.  Regularly scheduled Volunteer Gatherings will be held to allow for sharing of experiences and ideas.

Contact
Sara Smolover, Volunteer Coordinator 
Sarasmolover@hsl.harvard.edu
781-234-9186  

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