By LOIS KINDLE
Operating a hospital involves so much more than the work of doctors, nurses, administrators and staff. It also includes the dedicated efforts of 89 active volunteers, and more are needed.
“Our volunteers give so much every single day,” said Shannon Mitchell, South Bay’s marketing director. “They fill important roles, and we could not do what we do in the community without them. We appreciate every single one.”
If you have had a recent life change, want to feel useful and meet more people, need to fill your time and/or simply want to give something back to the community, South Bay Hospital could use your help.
There are plenty of positions from which to choose: hospital tour guide, golf cart shuttle driver or visitor escort; clerical support, cafeteria monitor or gift shop clerk; medical unit ambassador, main lobby assistor or mail room clerk; waiting room monitor, emergency room desk clerk, H2U program helper or comfort cart provider. On-the-job training is provided for all roles.
You are asked to work in your area of interest a minimum of one four-hour shift per week. The daily shifts are 8 a.m. to noon; noon to 4 p.m. and 4 to 8 p.m., seven days per week. There is a special need right now for weekend volunteers.
“We’d like to have a tour guide on Sunday, when we have an influx of people attending our brunch,” said Paula Hange, volunteer coordinator. “And it would be nice to have a gift shop volunteer, as well.”
All applicants are given free PPD screenings and free flu shots (in the fall) and their backgrounds are checked for the safety of patients, volunteers and visitors.
Volunteers also receive a free meal for every four hours they work and free uniforms.
South Bay Hospital recently hosted its annual volunteer appreciation banquet and awards presentation at Community Hall. Among those honored were Ken Miles, Outstanding Male Volunteer of the Year, and Millie Post, Outstanding Female Volunteer of the Year.
“I love community service,” said Miles, 78, a Lions Club member for 51 years. As such, he has a deep appreciation of the importance of helping others. “I handle mailroom duties with my wife, Pat, and deliver get-well cards to the patients. I truly enjoy it.”
Millie Post, 83, South Bay Hospital’s Outstanding Female Volunteer of the Year, agrees. For over 14 years she’s done office work, assisted folks in the surgical waiting area and kept them informed of their loved ones. At times, she even sat with some to ease their minds.
“I’m a people person, so I like making them feel comfortable when they have family in the hospital,” Post said. “I also enjoy working the events the doctors host here at the hospital, and I currently help in the front and emergency registration areas. I feel it’s my time to give back,” she added. “I enjoy being of service.”
South Bay also recognized the recipients of 5-, 10-, 15- and 20-year service pins and Top 10 Lifetime Hours awards.
You could be among those recognized next year. To sign up or receive more information, call Volunteer Services at 813-634-0187, between 12:30 and 9 p.m., weekdays or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.