The 2013 Junior Volunteer Program at the Almonte General Hospital/Fairview Manor ran from June 28 to August 30 and had 42 participants.
“There were many great, ambitious, young individuals from the community who helped with the program,” said Student Volunteer Leader Melissa Costello. “More than 1,800 hours were contributed by the Junior Volunteers this summer.”
The program was very enriching for the participants and also allowed the Senior Volunteers to take a well-deserved break from their volunteering positions during the rest of the year.
Participants in the annual Junior Volunteer Program have graduated from Grade 8 or are attending high school. The program is designed to help students gain experience in a hospital environment and to help them earn the 40 hours of community service they need to graduate from high school.
Junior Volunteers could choose one of five positions. Each position allowed a student to spend a week (usually Monday to Friday) volunteering in at least three different areas of the Hospital or Manor. During the week, they worked from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and were given a half-hour lunch break. On Fridays, the Junior Volunteers had a pizza party to get to know each other.
Junior Volunteers worked in the Medical and Surgical Unit, Obstetrical Unit, the Rosamond Unit, Fairview Manor recreation, Fairview Manor hairdressing, Day Hospital, Physiotherapy, Rosamond Unit recreation, Volunteer Services, and gardening.
Anne McRae was the Volunteer Coordinator for the program. Loyal and hardworking volunteers who helped train the Junior Volunteers were Rita Munro (who trained them in Physiotherapy) and Mary Dillabaugh and Claude Vachon (who helped with the Medical/Surgical Unit, Obstetrical Unit and Rosamond Unit water delivery).
All of the volunteers found the staff welcoming as they assumed their volunteer roles, and they also put in a lot of hard work to keep the volunteer program going.
“The experience was very good for me as a person,” said Melissa. “All my expectations were exceeded and I tried my best to help the program grow. Students working at AGH/FVM are in the processing of deciding on their future with some exploring what it is like to work in a hospital.”
Melissa, 19, who volunteered previously for the program, is entering her second year of the Bachelor of Science program at Queen’s University in Kingston. She will have a busy school year focusing on major life sciences and taking courses such as anatomy, physiology, molecular biology, genetics and organic chemistry. When she finishes her first degree she will consider applying to medical school to become a doctor.
To learn more about the Junior Volunteer program, please contact Anne McRae at 613-256-2514 ext.2226.