DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

June 20, 2012

Hospice offers new volunteer training


MERRIMACK — Home Health and Hospice Care is looking for people interested in volunteering in the hospice program with patients and families who live in the greater Manchester and greater Nashua areas.

Volunteer support helps patients and their families feel less alone during a difficult time and assists with practical needs.

In just two to three hours a week, a volunteer might provide a friendly visit, help with transportation to a medical appointment, assist with light housework, do shopping and errands, or provide respite so a family member can take a break.

Volunteers might see patients in their own homes, in nursing home or assisted-living facilities, or in the Community Hospice House.

Anything with some time to give and the desire to help, a special Summer Intensive Hospice Volunteer Training Program will be offered over a two-week period in July. This program is particularly offered to accommodate teachers, college students and others who wish to volunteer, and for whom the regular spring and fall courses are not a good fit.

Participants will meet from 12:30 to 5 p.m. daily on July 16, 17, 18, 19, 23, 24, 25 and 26 at Home Health and Hospice Care's office at 7 Executive Park Drive in Merrimack (near the Cinemagic Theater).

Interested participants are encouraged to contact the volunteer coordinator by early July to set up an interview. Since Hospice Volunteer Training is HHHC's most popular public education program and is always full, it is extremely important for anyone interested in attending the next session to register as soon as possible.

Training sessions are informative and cover a variety of topics, including hospice philosophy, listening and communication skills, pain and symptom management, grief and bereavement care, and the many complementary therapies provided by the agency, includes therapeutic art, pets, music and Reiki.

The training is free for prospective volunteers. Individuals interested in taking the Hospice training for personal or professional enrichment may attend for a $150 fee.

Hospice helps people to maintain dignity and quality of life when faced with a terminal diagnosis. A team of doctors, nurses, therapists, chaplains, bereavement support professionals, and volunteers provide support to both patients and their families, offering comfort and companionship to ease physical, emotional and spiritual needs.

Additional daytime and evening hospice training courses are held in spring and fall. There are also many other volunteer opportunities at the agency that do not require training. HHHC needs volunteers with a diverse range of interests, skills, and languages to meet the broad needs of the clients.

To register for training, contact Tanya Prather, manager of volunteer services, at 557-2806 or email volunteer@hhhc.org. Additional information is also available at hhhcvolunteers.org/volunteer.

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