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Volunteers Needed For Palliative Care Release

Contact: Tony Berry

(508) 793-5394

(774) 317-0422 (cell)

anthony.berry@umassmemorial.org

                                  

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WORCESTER, Mass. – The Power of Presence (PoP) organization is looking for volunteers to sit with patients in the hospital for a few hours and provide comfort and support. This organization aims to provide a caring presence for patients who are alone at the end of life. PoP will hold information sessions on Wednesday, March 2 and Thursday, March 3, to help interested individuals get a better understanding of the program and how they can help.

“Just being present is the most common way to offer comfort, but also listening to the concerns of the patient and loved ones, reading out loud, playing music, and holding hands can be helpful,” said Alex Doering, PoP program coordinator. “We currently have 40 volunteers from area colleges including the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Holy Cross, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute. We also have volunteers from UMass Memorial Medical Center and a handful of volunteers from the local community. We would like to add to those numbers to increase our support of existing patients and to be able to add new patients to our roster.”

PoP offers comprehensive training for potential volunteers. After the training, volunteers having a greater understanding on how to provide companionship, listen intently to the concerns of the patient, respond to the patient’s non-verbal communications, read out loud to the patient, and give a therapeutic hand massage. The next training session is April 30.

WHO:              UMass Memorial Medical Center is partnering with the Power of Presence Volunteer Group (PoP) in its dedication to ensuring that no person should have to die alone. PoP sends volunteers to visit with patients and assist with their end-of-life-care. Volunteers work with clinicians to assist in the care of patients which relieves family members who cannot remain at the bedside at all hours of the day and night. For further information or an application, please contact Alex Doering at alex.doering@umassmemorial.org.

 

WHAT:            Information sessions on serving as a palliative care volunteer with Power of Presence

 

WHEN:            Wednesday March 2, 6-7 pm, Thursday, March 3, 6-7 pm

 

WHERE:         55 Lake Avenue North, Worcester, MA 01655

            Albert Sherman Center East Multi-Purpose Room