There are many challenging aspects of being a care provider, but perhaps one of the most challenging is keeping a volunteer program up and running.
Since 2001, when Sue Risch first joined the Visiting Nurse Association of Greater St. Louis, she has been keeping the volunteer program very active with hospice, Advanced Illness Management (AIM) and Visit-A-Bit volunteers of many different ages and backgrounds.
With a background in volunteer management, Sue’s path could’ve led to a variety of careers, but she’s been dedicated to building the VNA’s programs all these years, due to her love of the volunteers and the positive impact they have on patients. Seeing how much as volunteer can provide for patients has been a source of satisfaction for her.
“Research shows that patients as afraid of dying as they are of dying alone,” says Sue.
It would seem that the volunteers have grown to understand their value, as participants have been staying within their programs longer. This is easily a testament to the welcoming, supportive environment Sue has created.
“[The common denominator is that the volunteers] are all caring, compassionate people and they want to give back,” says Sue. “You don’t need a lot of experience to be a volunteer. Just be a caring person and we will train you, support you and supervise you.”
Watch the video below to learn more about Sue’s role as Volunteer Coordinator.
To volunteer with one of VNA's programs, call (314) 918-7171 x 1254 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.