In celebrating National Volunteer Week from April 17-23, we at Merrimack Valley Hospice wish to recognize the significant contributions of volunteers and the impact of their service on local patients and families.
Our 140 volunteers are the heart and soul of this nonprofit organization which – quite frankly – was simply not the same during the past two years while they were largely kept away due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With restrictions once again being lifted, we have been thrilled to welcome them back.
Pet therapists and their well-trained dogs give the gift of unconditional love and a calm moment of connection at bedsides. Companions visit patients wherever they call home to read, play cards, do puzzles, write letters, reminisce, and do legacy work such as audio recordings and memoirs. Hairstylists provide their soothing services within private homes and at the High Pointe House hospice and palliative care residence in Haverhill.
Tuck-in callers reach out to patients on Thursdays to ensure their comfort level with medications and equipment for the upcoming weekend. Administrative volunteers make bereavement calls and help with various tasks at fundraisers and offices in Lawrence, High Pointe House, and York Hospital Hospice in Maine. Respite visitors enable a stressed family member to go to an appointment, food-shop, or simply get a much needed and deserved break.
More than anything, our volunteers lend a spirit of kindness. This week and always, we celebrate their distinct brand of compassionate care and the difference they make each day.
Director of Volunteers, Chaplaincy and Bereavement Services
Merrimack Valley Hospice