Reflections of Ponoka: Volunteering is your precious gift of giving

Having the opportunity to reach out and share a little of our precious time to assist and to extend a special friendship and to care ...

Having the opportunity to reach out and share a little of our precious time to assist and to extend a special friendship and to care for others is one of the greatest gifts that we can give.

Volunteer Resources at both the Ponoka Hospital and Care Centre and The Centennial Centre for Mental Health and Brain Injury appreciate the many dedicated individuals and groups who so kindly work with patients, residents and their clients all year round.

AHS volunteers are engaged in meaningful activities that make such a positive impact on the lives and health care experiences of our patients, residents, clients, their families and health care professionals. Your cherished gift of volunteering will be offered and arranged in a professional approach that will casually match the volunteers to the programs. Volunteers ages 12 and older are welcome to join in on these programs as individuals, groups, clubs or with family and friends, as an experience you will never forget, as well as one that will be remembered for a lifetime by those that you serve.

Would you like to join our volunteer team?

The Volunteer Resources team at the Ponoka Hospital Care Centre and the Centennial Centre are busy planning their fall/winter programs, as well as recruiting volunteers to assist them with the many ongoing activities for the care and enjoyment of their clients. The many benefits of becoming a volunteer offer an exciting opportunity to: help people and make a difference by impacting their lives in a positive way; contribute to and learn about your community and districts; increase and build your social network; gain and enhance your personal skills; and become an essential member of the healthcare team.

Serving as a kindly volunteer can also help further a future career through work experience, a special way to feel challenged and valued and to discover our strengths and talents, as well as a delightful way of fulfilling our retirement years.

Here are some of the volunteer opportunities now available at our Ponoka sites, which will continue to be successful with the dedicated and ongoing involvement of a great team of present and new volunteers.

Direct patient programs

• Hidden Treasure Gift Shop has been operated by members of the Ponoka Hospital and Care Centre Auxiliary for many decades.

• Chapel Portering helps porter and accompany patients to Chapel Services and Sing-A-Longs at both the PHCC and the CCMHBI.

• Pet visitation is an incredible program at both sites where owners and their canines are invited to drop in and visit specific units to provide an opportunity of visiting with patients and residents.

• Unit Friend is a special way to provide comfort and support to patients, which includes attending activities, visiting, and portering patients to special events.

• Fancy Fridays is a morning of pampering (hair and makeup) for patients on the Brain Injury Unit at the Centennial Centre.

• Patient Boutique provides donated clothing to patients, with assistance required with picking items, upkeep of the shop and sales of small items.

• Golden Spoons assists with the meal-time feeding of patients at both the PHCC and the CCMHBI.

• Special events volunteers would come in on an on-call basis to join in and help with various aspects of an event.

• Respiratory assistants help the department with respiratory walking tests.

• Caring Klowns provide visitation in a program that allows patients, residents and staff the delightful opportunity to laugh, talk and share through the use of humour and laughter.

Arts and wellness programs

• Volunteers can share their musical talents, as an individual or a group by providing music or singing with a variety of instruments to bring some toe-tapping and join in cheer to the patients at the sites.

• Movie Night provides an evening movie one night a month at both sites, which of course includes popcorn and juice for everyone.

• Volunteers are welcome to assist the entertainment groups who visit the hospitals, as well as bring the patient to the event and be a special friend for a couple of hours. Help is always needed to create and assemble monthly displays for the bulletin boards at our sites, and your ideas are always welcome.

Community Care programs

Volunteers are always welcome to assist as greeters and registration for various community events such as flu and mammography clinics, as well as becoming a community visitor for a client in their home to help decrease loneliness and boredom.

Support programs for special community projects also require volunteers for project based activities such as acting as a clerical assistant and for community workshops like Better Choices for Better Health and the Bereavement Support Program.

How to become a volunteer

Those throughout Ponoka and the county interested in becoming part of the vital community volunteer team are encouraged to contact Leanne Brusegard, volunteer co-ordinator at the Ponoka Hospital and Care Centre at 403-704-8312 or Janice Mackie at the Centennial Centre for Mental Health and Brain Injury at 403-783-7782. A casual meeting can be arranged to discuss your participation in the programs of your choice, with training available, and a great opportunity to share your skills, your kindness, your care, and your joy with those who require and really appreciate just a little help from a special friend.