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The Volunteer Ombudsman Program is part of the South Carolina Appalachian Council of Governments’ Regional Long-Term Ombudsman Program. Volunteers are not certified Ombudsman, but do help assist them in their duties. The Swedish word Ombudsman means someone who investigates citizens’ complaints and tries to bring about a fair resolution. Ombudsman is someone who protects, mediates, and advocates.
Do you want to make a difference in the community?
Become a Volunteer Ombudsman in a long term care facility and make a difference in the lives of long-term care residents.
A Volunteer Ombudsman is a volunteer who visits in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. A volunteer especially visits the residents with little or no family.
The primary function of a Volunteer Ombudsman is to be a friendly face that brightens a resident’s day. The volunteer provides encouragement by listening to concerns, educates residents and families about resident rights, and helps residents find answers to their questions.
Over sixty percent (60%) of the residents of long term care facilities in South Carolina have no visitors. They have no family or friends available to visit them or spend time with them. A lack of social contact and a support system often results in depression and decline. By volunteering, you will help to diminish the sense of isolation that long term care residents experience and help them achieve a sense of self-determination.
Volunteers must be 18 years of age or older, have the ability to maintain confidentiality, and do not have a criminal record.
To be considered as a Volunteer candidate, an applicant must complete a screening process. This process includes completion of an application, an interview process, and SLED background check. Volunteers will also receive classroom and on-the-job training.