This week we had the privilege of participating in the UC Davis Retiree Resource Fair on Thursday, held on the campus and expertly coordinated with the community by Sue Barnes and her staff.
It is always gratifying when people stop by our table and tell us what a blessing Yolo Hospice was in their time of need. We bring these comments back to our staff and share how our community is blessed by their loving care.
When we are out and about doing our outreach, we are also reminded of how lucky we are to be part of this community. Recently, when Davis Healthcare experienced a fire, the community gathered together to assist with safe placement of their residents. Carlton Plaza, University Retirement Community, Courtyard and Alderson’s were all there to help with finding a home for the displaced residents.
Also in our community, Anne-Marie Flynn is coordinating the volunteer training in Davis for the Sacramento Hospice Consortium. The consortium consists of all nonprofit hospice programs. Each hospice program takes a turn in bringing together instructors to train a new batch of volunteers. This month the participants are meeting at St. James Catholic Church in Davis.
From the Sacramento Hospice Consortium website (www.sachospice.org) comes this, “The hospice concept of care represents a continually growing trend in world health practices. In 1973, there was one hospice in the United States; by 2000 there were nearly 3,000 hospices caring for over 400,000 patients annually, and the numbers continue to grow.
“As an integral part of the hospice team, the volunteer is crucial to the quality of care any hospice can offer. Volunteers must be caring and emotionally mature individuals who are comfortable with the issues of death and dying and are committed to their work.
“Volunteers gain tremendous satisfaction from making a difference in the lives of others and continually report personal rewards, individual growth and increased self-knowledge from their experiences in hospice.”
Hospice volunteers are special people. As one volunteer stated, “You get to the heart connection very quickly, and you know you are making a difference and the blessings flow both ways.”
When people respond by saying how hard it must be to work in hospice, my answer is simple. You receive many more blessings than you can imagine. Those of us who have found our way to this work cannot imagine doing anything else.
For an employee, working for a nonprofit health care organization where the mission is truly about the care for patients and family members is more than a blessing, it is a haven. We are your hospice; we are your resource in the health care community. More information about us is available on our website, www.yolohospice.org.
— Cynthia Wolff, R.N., is director of access and outreach for Yolo Hospice. Her column is published monthly.