Want hands-on, independent patient care? Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) is for you!


Cause Areas


It's flexible! We'll work with your schedule.


1500 E Medical Center DrL1252 WHMain University HospitalAnn Arbor, MI 48109
Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) Volunteer


Inpatient program at the University of Michigan Health Systems

(Several slots available)

Our Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) volunteer experience provides individuals with hospital inpatient care exposure through contact with patients, family members, other volunteers, social work, and hospital staff on nursing units. Students or community adults will gain experience assessing a patient’s medical condition, cognitive status and physical functioning. They will learn how to coordinate a care plan and provide related interventions. HELP interventions promote and monitor patient support, orientation, cognitive stimulation, relaxation/sleep, mobility, feeding/eating, and hearing or vision needs where functional deficits require assistance. HELP goals include improving the hospital experience of older patients, reducing the length of hospital stays, promoting independence after discharge, and reducing the risk of physical de-conditioning, isolation, falls, and delirium. HELP volunteers are part of a team that truly make a difference every single day for our older adults who are admitted, and build upon their own clinical skills at the same time.


* Reliable and caring; enjoy working with older people; Mature in judgment; Discreet, empathetic behavior and ability to exercise diplomacy in talking to patients, patient’s family and staff; Ability to relate with sensitivity to all patients; Ability to work independently and assume responsibility; Ability to refer questions to others as needed. Must be 18 years and older.


* Daily visits to patients who are enrolled in HELP to provide support and orienting communication; Participate in the therapeutic activities program by providing bedside activities such as reminiscence, trivia, and current event activities; Assist in early mobilization program by walking active patients and performing range of motion exercises with the bedridden patient; Provide feeding and companionship during meals if needed; Assist HELP staff members as requested.


* Volunteers must not interfere with a patient’s medical treatment or replace professional advice; Volunteers must maintain confidentiality regarding a patient’s medical information and personal life; Dietary and activity restrictions must be cleared with the unit nurse


* Completion of facilities Volunteer Services Training Orientation (obtain badge, shots, etc); Attendance and completion of the Hospital Elder Life Program’s volunteer training which consists of 4-5 hours of classroom training and 12 hours of "shadowing" a trained "veteran" volunteer which will build volunteer skills in order to successfully complete this position whether you have experience or not.


  • Patient Care
  • Healthcare
  • Elder care
  • Mental Health
  • Bereavement Support
  • Customer Service

Good Match For

People 55+

Requirements & Commitment

  • Background Check
  • Must be at least 18
  • Orientation or Training
  • 1 year commitment (can be flexible if needed)
  • One 4 hour shift per week is required - above skills not required, need to have communication skills

Report this opportunity

Report this opportunity