The 2018 hurricane season has been extraordinarily active in parts of the U.S., with Hurricane Florence currently impacting millions in the Carolinas. As this natural disaster unfolds, the staff here at VolunteerMatch is doing its part to ensure that, if you are in an affected community, you are prepared and safe. And if you are looking to help with disaster relief efforts, you know about the most effective ways to contribute.
By Your Side is a program that provides "presence" to a dying patient and can include providing some support to the family. Our belief is that no one should die alone. When it is determined that a patient likely has 72 hours or less, our goal is to assign a volunteer to sit with them and merely provide presence (generally at this stage, the patient is no longer able to speak or to acknowledge you but we know that the sense of hearing is the last to go and they may well be aware that someone is there with them offering comfort in their final hours)...just being there can make the last leg of the patient's journey more peaceful. This can also be a huge source of comfort to the families who may not be able to be with the patient during this time.
We look to schedule volunteers in 2-4 hour increments from 8am until 8pm (after which paid staff takes over) however there is always the option to stay longer if it something the volunteer wishes to do. This is offered to patients no matter where we serve them--in our in-patient units, in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, in hospitals and in their personal homes.
Volunteers have the right to accept or reject any assignment without judgement. Providing presence for someone in thier final hours is one of the most honorable and special things that a volunteer can do ...
Good Match For
Requirements & Commitment
Must be at least 18
Orientation or Training
2-4 hour shifts
16 hours of volunteer education, 2-part TB test and passing a criminal background check