Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal launches Vol­un­teer for Health­care Pro­gramme

The Star (St. Lucia) - - LOCAL -

Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal for­mally launched its “Vol­un­teer for Health­care” pro­gramme” de­signed specif­i­cally for stu­dents look­ing for an op­por­tu­nity to part­ner with health­care pro­fes­sion­als while sup­port­ing pa­tients and fam­i­lies in a health­care en­vi­ron­ment. Vol­un­teer po­si­tions are avail­able in se­lected de­part­ments at the hos­pi­tal, each with the goal of en­hanc­ing, en­gag­ing and mo­ti­vat­ing the vol­un­teer for the fu­ture while im­prov­ing the pa­tient and fam­ily ex­pe­ri­ence.

As­sis­tant Direc­tor of HR, Elena Plum­mer, said though vol­un­teerism has ex­isted at Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal for quite some time man­age­ment saw the need to cre­ate a proper struc­ture to the pro­gramme for the mu­tual ben­e­fit of the hos­pi­tal and the vol­un­teer.

“We have a num­ber of ob­jec­tives for this Vol­un­teer for Health­care de­liv­ery pro­gramme at the Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal. One, we want to pro­vide vol­un­teers with a mean­ing­ful work ex­pe­ri­ence and the op­por­tu­nity to de­velop new skills. Two, we want to en­hance and mo­ti­vate the vol­un­teers and that is why our fo­cus is on young per­sons, al­though all per­sons are wel­come. Three, we want to as­sist and guide in­ter­ested per­sons in ful­fill­ing their ca­reer goals.”

Danielle Gor­don, who cur­rently teaches at the St. Joseph’s Con­vent, is a for­mer vol­un­teer at the Ezra Long Lab­o­ra­tory at Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal. She was in­stru­men­tal in cre­at­ing the data­base for post­mortems in Saint Lu­cia and also as­sisted in de­vel­op­ing the in­ven­tory struc­ture for the blood bank and Ezra Long Lab­o­ra­tory. Danielle has a de­gree in Bio­chem­istry with a mi­nor in Bi­ol­ogy and is a spe­cial­ist in Mi­crosoft Of­fice Word, Ac­cess and Ex­cel. She had en­cour­ag­ing words for other vol­un­teers.

“I think we should al­ways give back to the places that have given us a lot. Saint Lu­cia, this is where my foun­da­tion is. Al­though I have gone away to school, I have come back and I think I have to give back and that’s why I opted to give back to Ezra Long Lab­o­ra­tory.

“I also vol­un­teered at the Royal Saint Lu­cia Po­lice Force where I did the ex­hibits sub­mis­sion data­base for them where we have the stor­age of ex­hibits be­ing tracked. So it’s al­ways im­por­tant to give back to where you’ve started.”

Se­nior Phar­ma­cist at the Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal, Abra­ham Weeks, is part of the man­age­ment team that helped cre­ate the struc­ture for the Vol­un­teer for Health­care pro­gramme. He said the pro­gramme grew out of a need to con­trib­ute to so­ci­ety as part the hos­pi­tal’s cor­po­rate-so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity as the lead­ing health­care in­sti­tu­tion on is­land.

“This ini­tia­tive was led by our il­lus­tri­ous Ex­ec­u­tive Direc­tor, Mrs. Jeanette Hughes and she saw the need that we all saw. We are mov­ing to a new hos­pi­tal, there is a need for hu­man re­source, so we’re look­ing to­wards the fu­ture. Of course, those per­sons will also help us with the im­me­di­ate move but the goal is the fu­ture. We want to cre­ate pro­fes­sion­als who care about peo­ple and who care about the de­liv­ery of health­care. So the pro­gramme is struc­tured in such a way to ex­pose young per­sons and per­sons who vol­un­teer to many as­pects of health­care de­liv­ery, pro­fes­sion­al­ism, work ethics and a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ar­eas.”

Vol­un­teer po­si­tions are avail­able in the fol­low­ing ar­eas: • Phar­macy

• Lab­o­ra­tory

• Phys­io­ther­apy

• Ra­di­ol­ogy

At the end of the vol­un­teer pe­riod par­tic­i­pants will be given a Cer­tifi­cate of Vol­un­teerism, cer­ti­fy­ing that they have vol­un­teered for a spec­i­fied pe­riod at the Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal, and list­ing the ar­eas in which the par­tic­i­pant has gained ex­pe­ri­ence.

Vol­un­teers may use par­tic­i­pa­tion in this pro­gramme, along with their Cer­tifi­cate of Vol­un­teerism, to­wards meet­ing ex­pe­ri­ence re­quire­ments for var­i­ous other op­por­tu­ni­ties that may arise.

The Vol­un­teer for Health­care pro­gramme was of­fi­cially launched on Tues­day Septem­ber 6. In­ter­ested per­sons can con­tact the Vic­to­ria Hos­pi­tal for more in­for­ma­tion.

Danielle Gor­don, a staunch be­liever in the ben­e­fits of be­ing a vol­un­teer.

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