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Donate to Our Volunteer Department for Give Something Away Day!

Our Volunteers’ mission is to enhance the quality of life for the patients and families we have the privilege of serving. They do that in many ways – one way is by giving comforting gifts or crafts to help patients and families experience joy, comfort, and ease. On Give Something Away Day, we hope you consider donating any of the items below:

  • Zippers for activity mats
  • Curling ribbon for balloon bouquets
  • Yarn (all colors)
  • Cardstock (all colors)
  • Poly-fil 100% premium polyester fiberfill
  • Small stuffed animals
  • Crayons
  • Pencils
  • Journals
  • Decks of playing cards
  • Individually wrapped candy
  • Activity/coloring books
  • Travel size lotions
  • Nail polish
  • Crossword books
  • Word search books
  • Sudoku books
  • Stickers
  • Non-noise making toys (i.e. slinkies, bouncing balls, mazes)

For more details about these items, such as how many we need, or if you are a crafter who is interested in supporting our mission, please contact Volunteer Services at 937-258-5536. We thank you for supporting the Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton mission and are grateful for your generosity.

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Bears, Bears, Bears at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton

Oakwood High School students & Lasertoma group give stuffed teddy bears to patients at Ohio's Hospice of Dayton Hospice House.No lions. No tigers. But lots and lots of bears, bears, bears.

With a mission of visiting and cheering patients, LaSertoma of Dayton Club members and students from Oakwood High School bring stuffed bears monthly to deliver to patients at the Hospice House on Wilmington Avenue in Dayton. LaSertoma member Pam Stephens can’t say how many bears have been delivered, but shares “LaSertoma started this project in the 1990s. We bring 40 bears with us 7 or 8 months out of the year.” That’s a lot of bears!

And a lot of smiles.

Delivery of the bears is a heartwarming experience for everyone involved. “We have had some patients – usually men – tell us they never had a teddy bear before, “ Pam says. “They hug on tightly when they get one.”

Oakwood students support the project and Stephens says patients really enjoy the interaction with students. “They are wonderful with the patients,” Stephens observes. “Many of them have had grandparents at hospice, so they have a special sense of the value in visiting and connecting.”

Each bear is presented along with a poem written by long-time LaSertoma member and hospice volunteer Helen Fornes:

To patients we give huggie bears

To help your day be brighter,

This warm and oh so loving petOakwood High School students & Lasertoma group give stuffed teddy bears to patients at Ohio's Hospice of Dayton Hospice House.

Will make your burdens light

 

Oakwood High School students & Lasertoma group give stuffed teddy bears to patients at Ohio's Hospice of Dayton Hospice House.Bears and Hugs bring joy to all

A loving touch to share

Hug-A-Bear Day at the Hospice of Dayton

Is our way to show we care,

LaSertoma receives some financial support from the students at St. Luke Elementary School in Beavercreek, who save lunch money to assist in the purchase of bears. Additional donations are accepted to help support the bear gift program. Please contact Pam Stephens by email at pamstephens@daytonlasertoma.com.

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Help Our Mission – Become a Volunteer in 2017!

Volunteer helps with office tasks.

Help us enhance the quality of life of patients and families – #volunteer with us! The first volunteer orientation of the year is January 21.

At orientation, you will learn:

  • History and goals of end-of-life care
  • Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton history
  • Role of Volunteers and opportunities
  • Confidentiality, infection control, and safety
  • Boundaries
  • Effective listening
  • Loss and grief

Volunteer orientation dates throughout the year are:

January 21

February 13

March 1 & 25

April 12

May 10

June 7 & 17

July 12

August 19

September 18

October 11 & 14

November 8

December 6

All sessions are from 8:30 am – 2:30 pm.

If you are interested, please complete the volunteer application and learn more here.

Please call 937.256.9507, ext. 3314 for more information.

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Hospice Nursing Honor Guard Pays Tribute to Nurses

“The concept of honoring nurses who have given themselves to the care of others, was the initial appeal for me. It became more than a concept from the first time I stepped into a patient’s home, surrounded and embraced by her family, friends and fellow nurses. This nurse, who was dying at home, cared for by her parents, was younger than I. Her 15-year old daughter was at her bedside as we tried to thank her for her years of service to others. I have been a hospice nurse for more than 20 years. I have been privileged to share in many life closures, but in this situation, I struggled with my own tears.”

That is how Susan Boesch, RN, OCN, CHPN, with Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton describes her experience with the Nursing Honor Guard program, which was created to celebrate and honor those who have dedicated their professional lives to nursing. With growing demand for these ceremonies, Ohio’s Hospice needs more staff volunteers to assist in honoring nursing professionals at the end-of-life.

The Nursing Honor Guard is comprised of Ohio’s Hospice volunteer nurses who conduct a ceremony at the patient bedside. Upon request, the Nursing Honor Guard conducts a ceremony to celebrate the service and honor nurses who have life-limiting illnesses and have become patients in the care of Ohio’s Hospice. Dressed in traditional and historical uniforms, the Honor Guard recognizes the nurse for her commitment to caring and providing compassion to patients. Career highlights and individual achievements are highlighted as part of the ceremony, in which the honoree is presented with a pin and certificate of appreciation.

According to Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton Team Leader Jena Langford, RN, BSN, CHPN, CCM, “This program grew from a Bright Idea submitted by Christy Dempsey RN. Christy attended a graveside nursing honor guard tribute and was touched by the respect and appreciation given to the nurse that had passed. Christy wanted Hospice to honor our patients who are nurses.” Jena and Bessie Marshall adapted a program for Ohio’s Hospice that focuses on bedside tributes while patients are still alive.  Langford explains, “We interview the family and/or patient and create an individualized script tailored to each patient/nurse.  It is an honor to write these tributes and to be involved in presenting them”

Boesch says she has a new sense of appreciation for the role of nursing as a result of participating in Honor Guard Ceremonies. “I have seen, first hand, just how much a career in nursing means to the whole family. How proud they are of her/his achievements and service to others.”

Dressed in traditional and historical uniforms, the Honor Guard recognizes the nurse for her commitment to caring and providing compassion to patients.

Her sentiments are echoed by Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton Care Team Coordinator Linda Cummins, RN, BSN, CHPN, who opted for a career in nursing after completing military service. “I recall that feeling I had when I put on my nursing cap and was given a Nightingale lantern at my nursing school graduation.  I felt a sense of pride and community — very similar to the camaraderie of the military.  I recall the deep sense of honor and responsibility I felt as we all recited the Nightingale Pledge together at the conclusion of our graduation ceremony.  I have seen that sense of pride on the nurses we have honored with the Nursing Honor Guard.  There is a sense of purpose, honor, and responsibility – responsibility for something much bigger than one person, one nurse or one patient.  There are very few things in the civilian world that echoes military honor and commitment, but nursing is very much like that. The Nursing Honor Guard has given me that gift, that sense of awesome responsibility we have in caring for others.”

Cummins says the ceremony means much more to her than simply recognizing a fellow nurse. “We are acknowledging the role of nursing in our culture and how important and respected it is.  We are thanking these nurses and their families for the sacrifices of late nights, shift work, on-call duties, and informal nursing duties for family, friends and community.  We are acknowledging a lifetime of service.  We are acknowledging the higher calling of the life in the service of nursing.”

Langford cites Cummins and others whose participation has been a key to the success of the Nursing Honor Guard effort. “I would like to give a special thank you to the core group of staff who enable me to keep this program running smoothly – Linda Cummins, Terri Knopp, and Christy Dempsey. And a great thank you to all the staff volunteers taking time out of their day to complete these tributes!”

Ohio’s Hospice team members interested in volunteering to serve with the Nursing Honor Guard are invited to contact Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton Coming Home Team Leader Jena Langford, RN, BSN, CHPN, CCM at jlangford@hospiceofdayton.org or Admission Care Liaison with Ohio’s Hospice of Miami County Christy Dempsey, RN, BSN, CHPN, at cdempsey@hospiceofmiamicounty.org.

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AmeriCorps Volunteers Visit Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton

The flower beds at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton were recently given extra care, thanks to the giving hands of AmeriCorps NCCC volunteers from the North Central Region.

From Vinton, Iowa, the group of 18-24 year olds volunteered at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton and worked seven hours on Monday, May 16 planting annuals and maintaining our flower beds.  The group was led by our lead landscaper Miriam Wolf.

The volunteers are participating in a 10-month program traveling in the Northwestern region to help strengthen communities and their own leadership skills.  Currently, eight members are here in Dayton for two months working with the Aullwood Audubon Center and Farm as part of a grant.

The staff from Aullwood suggested the volunteers extend their services to Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton to help meet the 80 hours of community service they are required to meet.

One of the volunteers Keira Larson, 23, from Chandler, Arizona has never had exposure to a hospice and mentioned the other members were new to the environment as well. “We have been very fortunate with our experience,” Larson commented.

“I think that the young adults volunteering at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton are gaining a new story and experience to share,” said Team Leader Ashley Frampton. “Many have never been to a hospice before, and I think it is good for them to familiarize themselves with what is in their home community. I hope they all walk away from the day with a new perspective and knowledge.”

Frampton went on to say volunteering at a hospice is a great way for them to help out at a place with which they are unfamiliar.

“I am proud of my team for taking the initiative and reaching out to help organizations in the community where we are living and serving,” Frampton said, “It is the first time they have volunteered at a hospice and I hope it is not the last.”

The volunteers were given a tour of our Hospice House and educated on the mission and services we provide. After learning more about hospice, the volunteers felt so good about the work they were doing for our organization that they came back to serve another day.  We were happy with the news!

Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton thanks the AmeriCorps Volunteers for their hard work and wishes them well in their valuable work.

Learn more about AmeriCorps NCCC

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Volunteers Honored for Contributing Nearly 70,000 Hours of Service

In 2015, Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton and Ohio’s Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties volunteers honored 500 patients who were veterans with special tribute ceremonies; made 6,868 calls to bereaved family and friends and created 203 Memory Bears for 90 families. Volunteers also made 1,956 patient visits and provided 414 caregiver relief visits.

The contributions of hospice volunteers was celebrated during National Volunteer Week as Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton and Ohio’s Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties honored 694 volunteers, who contributed 66,959 hours of service in 2015.

Hospice volunteers play a vital role with the Quality of Life teams serving hospice patients and their families, providing respite care, shopping, delivery of medications and supplies, massage, beautician and barber services, and gardening.  Volunteers with their pet therapy animals spent 598 hours visiting patients and families. Volunteers also provide clerical and office support, serve as receptionists, assist with fundraising events, data entry and serve as Ambassadors helping families whose loved ones are receiving care at the Hospice House locations of Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton and Ohio’s Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties.

“Volunteer service to our organization is calculated at $1,544,745,” says Maureen Swarts, Volunteer Services Manager.  “But in reality their contribution is priceless.  They give from their hearts and enable us to touch the lives of patients and families with compassion and care that far exceeds any dollar amount. We are so grateful for all our volunteers do to enable us to deliver superior care and superior services. They make our mission possible!”

There are always opportunities for volunteers interested in direct patient contact and care to serve as ambassadors, visitors and caregivers, with flexibility in the time and location of service. For additional information please visit www.hospiceofdayton.org/volunteers/

 

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