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April 30, 2008 > Washington Hospital Celebrates National Volunteer Week

Washington Hospital Celebrates National Volunteer Week

Celebrate Volunteer Week by Volunteering at Your Community Hospital

When Marina Jordan decided to become a volunteer at Washington Hospital three years ago, she wanted an opportunity to reach out to people in need. Always passionate about health care, Jordan has since become the current Washington Hospital Service League President and she says its one of the best decisions she's ever made in her life.
"I feel quite blessed in life and I wanted to give back and do great things for other people," Jordan says. "All it takes for me is for one person to say 'Thank You' - there aren't enough words or ways to repay you when you do something nice for someone."
Jordan, a 20-year Fremont resident and former local business owner says she almost feels guilty for how good she feels when she volunteers at the hospital.
"I get so much out of helping patients and the Hospital staff," she says. "Everyone here makes you feel like you are a part of the team."
Jordan volunteers much of her time in the hospital's Emergency Department. With more than 40,000 visits each year, the ER is a busy place that requires Jordan to think on her feet and respond to a variety of requests and assignments.
"I provide an extra pair of hands and feet for the triage nurse by distributing blankets, picking up medication and running to the hospital laboratory," she says.
Jordan also spends time working the front registration window in the ER - an important role since it's the first person a patient will come into contact with when they first arrive at the hospital.
"As the first person that people come into contact with, it's important to always be compassionate and reassure patients and their families that we're going to take care of them." Jordan says. "I treat people the same way I would want to be treated if I was in the ER. I always try to comfort people and let them know they are not alone."
Jordan says one of the best things about volunteering at the Hospital is all the new friendships she has developed with other volunteers and staff members.
"The Hospital is my home away from home," she says. "I always look forward to the time I spend volunteering."
Volunteers Make A Difference
During National Volunteer Week, April 27 - May 3, Washington Hospital will be celebrating and thanking the hundreds of people who donate their time and talents to benefit the hospital.
"Washington Hospital is fortunate to receive so much support from the men, women and students who give their free time to making a the Hospital a better place," says Anna Elola, director of Volunteer Services at Washington Hospital. "The Service League is actively recruiting people that have a special touch with people or are looking for a new endeavor that involves helping people in a variety of ways. There's a large generation of baby boomers out there that have so much to share and volunteering is a great way to give back to our community."
Volunteers Contribute in Several Ways
Volunteer opportunities at Washington Hospital are abundant for community members who want to get involved with their local community hospital. Volunteers act as receptionists for the hospital, discharge patients, deliver flowers, staff the gift shop, give tours of the birthing center for expectant families and staff the Community Health Resource Library.
Jeannie Yee, a retired registered nurse, became a volunteer in 2003 after attending an information session with her daughter who was interested in becoming a high school volunteer. Yee spends most of her time at the hospital working with newborns and with the Washington On Wheels (W.O.W) Mobile Health Clinic.
"There are so many new things to learn and it's very satisfying to help people using the new skills you have learned," she says. "There are always new programs and opportunities opening up and the Hospital is a very dynamic place. The Hospital is a reflection of our multicultural community and I enjoy being a part of it."
New Volunteer Opportunities
Are you interested in helping Washington Hospital fight the diabetes pandemic in our own backyard? Washington's Outpatient Diabetes Education Program is looking for volunteers. The program is looking for volunteers during peak business hours (Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.) There are also opportunities to volunteer in the Hospital's gift shop and in the surgery waiting room. Surgery liaisons keep families up to date on the status of the loved ones while they are undergoing surgery.
If you are interested in volunteering, please call the Volunteer Services Office at (510) 791-3465, or send an email to anna_elola@whhs.com.
Become a Volunteer
Prospective volunteers are welcome to attend a monthly volunteer information session at Washington Hospital where they will be informed about current volunteer opportunities and requirements for volunteering. Applications are provided at the information session. Volunteers who meet the health, age and background screening requirements must attend an all-day orientation to learn about the hospital's mandatory safety program. All volunteers are asked to volunteer a minimum of twice a month.
The next volunteer information meeting with take place on Friday, May 2 from 4 to 5 p.m., in the Conrad E. Anderson, M.D. Auditorium Rooms A & B located in Washington West at 2500 Mowry Avenue in Fremont.
For more information about becoming a Washington Hospital volunteer, call (510) 791-3465 or visit the hospital website at www.whhs.com, click on "Giving to WHHS," and select "Volunteer Opportunities" from the drop-down menu.

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