Volunteering and building community connections
Published 10:47 am Monday, April 26, 2021
Over the past year, while navigating the unchartered waters of a global pandemic, we here at Vidant Beaufort have discovered the importance of community and volunteers like never before.
We have been showered with meals when we were hungry. We’ve been gifted masks and additional PPE when there was a risk of shortage. We have experienced warm welcomes and thank yous from our local fire, rescue and law enforcement, but most of all we have been loved and cared for by our community and volunteers in so many wonderful ways and for that we say, thank you. During this time, our community volunteers have showed us the importance of having a solid community at all times, not just the critical times. In fact, the very nature of nonprofits thrive on is that principle. Having such support has been critical to keep us going.
Throughout this pandemic, it is safe to say we have all realized the impact that everyday socialization has on our lives. Not being able to hug those that mean the most to us, not seeing our family and friends for months at the time, and being quarantined to our homes has been like nothing we have ever experienced before. Research and studies have proven the importance of community and interaction for ones’ overall mental and physical health, especially in times such as these. Staying connected, expressing affection, and showing compassion have both been linked to decreasing stress and high blood pressure and volunteering helps you do, just that.
At Vidant Beaufort, each day our volunteers help deliver high quality, compassionate care that our patients and their families deserve. Serving in a variety of roles, our volunteers make an incredible difference every day. Our volunteers come from all walks of life, ranging from retired residents to working professionals to high school students, all looking for an opportunity to be involved and give back to the community.
Our volunteers are a vital part of the Vidant Beaufort team. Volunteers currently serve throughout the hospital in areas such as our volunteer workroom, our Upfront Gift Corner, patient access services, outpatient surgery services, our emergency department, the Marion L. Shepherd Cancer Center, and the opportunities are expanding. As different as our volunteers are, they all share important qualities. They are caring. They are compassionate. And they are willing to serve others.
We are blessed with many wonderful volunteers, both adults and juniors who continuously sacrifice their time and energy to give back to our patients, their families and our community. Each year, our volunteers here at the hospital and at the Marion L. Sheppard Cancer Center donate more than 16,000 hours of their time with no expectation of compensation for their time spent volunteering. Their unwavering dedication and commitment to those in need is admirable to say the least.
During the month of April, we celebrate National Volunteer Week. This year National Volunteer Week is April 18 – 24. This week is a time where we will celebrate the impact of volunteer services, both recognizing and thanking our volunteers for the unselfish time they lend each and every day. Their commitment to our patients and their families, our staff and our community is comparable to none. They teach us, love us and inspire us. Most importantly, they are a vital part of our success and we simply could not do it without them. They are passionate and motivated to make a powerful difference in the lives of others and we are honored to call them ours.
Our volunteers tell us that what they receive from volunteering is far more valuable than any monetary compensation. As a volunteer, you will meet new people, make new friends and have fulfilling experiences all while serving others. If you too are ready to make a positive impact on others and start experiencing the wonderful mental and physical health benefits in the process, we encourage you to be the “Hands That Serve, with Hearts Who Care” by volunteering at Vidant Beaufort Hospital. Please contact Jamie Tice, Manager of Volunteer Services in the volunteer office at 975-4161 or via email at Jamie.Tice@vidanthealth.com.