Compass Regional Hospice readies for May patient volunteer training

Eight volunteers completed patient care training in Caroline County last fall. Those volunteers are Virginia Martin, John Obrien, Nancy Kline, Joanna Zigrossi, Gilbrina Payne, Raymond Bennett and Jody Herb. Not pictured is Shelia Faulkner.

CENTREVILLE — Compass Regional Hospice will host a three-day patient care volunteer training May 7-9 at Compass Regional Hospice’s Grief Support Services wing of the Hospice Center in Centreville, 255 Comet Drive.

The training will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and is a requirement to become a patient care volunteer with Compass Regional Hospice.

According to a news release, completion of this training qualifies volunteers to provide emotional support and practical assistance to hospice patients, families and caregivers in their homes, in nursing homes and assisted living facilities and in the residential hospice centers in Centreville and Chestertown.

Topics include an overview of hospice, the process of dying, spiritual care and its place in hospice care, the stages of grief, effective communications techniques, family dynamics, stress management and self-care for caregivers.

Those who wish to provide direct patient care will be required to complete several additional hours with patients under the supervision of a Compass Regional Hospice clinical staff member. Volunteers who wish to be involved in providing grief support for hospice family members will work closely with staff from the Grief Support Services team. Grief support roles include bereavement volunteers, vigil volunteers and grief support facilitators.

Robyn Affron, volunteer coordinator with Compass Regional Hospice, said being a patient care volunteer is similar to being a good neighbor, and volunteering is an opportunity to develop special relationships with patients, their families, and caregivers.

She said volunteering through Compass Regional Hospice is about providing companionship, and in many cases, volunteers are helping caregivers to have some respite or are visiting a patient who may not have many visitors and who might like some company — whether that is taking a walk, listening to music or reading a book together.

Compass Regional Hospice has myriad ways with which anyone who is interested may volunteer, including administrative assistance, greeting at hospice center locations in Queen Anne’s and Kent counties, assisting with events and outreach, being educational ambassadors for Compass Regional Hospice and assisting with staffing needs at Estate Treasures, an upscale resale shop in Chester that is run entirely by volunteers.

Compass Regional Hospice relies on more than 300 volunteers of all ages to support its mission of “Care on your terms.” Whatever your motivation to volunteer, there is a place for you at Compass Regional Hospice. the release states.

For more information about becoming a volunteer for Compass Regional Hospice, contact Affron at 443-262-4112 or raffron@compassregionalhospice.org, or visit compassregionalhospice.org/volunteers to download the patient care volunteer training registration form.

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