As a volunteer, one of the things I do is to work on the monthly Hospice Volunteer Newsletter with Volunteer Coordinator Melissa Lubatti. We have been doing this for about 12 years now, and speaking to the question of whether hospice makes a difference in the community, the cards and letters we include in each newsletter is absolute proof, to me, of the good that EvergreenHealth Hospice does.
There are large binders of these cards and letters, and as I choose which to put in for a given issue, I’m so touched – and sometimes amazed – by the messages they contain. There are comments about how kind and thoughtful the staff and volunteers are to them and their loved one; how beautiful and welcoming the Hospice Center is; and how they are so grateful to everyone at hospice for the love, the care, the understanding, and emotional help they received.
As to what hospice means to me: it is a place of refuge for patients, family, and friends. Everyone at hospice, staff & volunteers, understands what is happening, is there to help to the greatest extent they can, and provides comfort and companionship to the people going through a very difficult time in their lives.
I came to hospice as a volunteer because I’d been through both my parents’ deaths; one without hospice and one with hospice care. The difference was so dramatic, the help from the local hospice so wonderful, informative, and stress-reducing, I could hardly believe it. My mother began looking forward to visits from her hospice nurse, because he made her laugh.
A month or two after her funeral, I looked up hospices in the area, and was so glad to see one close by to where I lived. I waited through the year-long requirement, then signed up to become a volunteer. I have been a volunteer at hospice for 17 years.