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Hospice Volunteers Sought

Hospice Touch of Tomah Memorial Hospital is looking for volunteers to support terminally ill patients and family members.  A four-week volunteer training series will be held Wednesdays beginning Oct. 9 thru Oct. 30 from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Tomah Hospice office, 601 Straw Street in Tomah.

“Trained Hospice volunteers can choose to be involved in a variety of ways, like direct services with patients and their families, office clerical work, or assisting with special events and fundraising,” said Hospice volunteer coordinator Kris Nichols.

Nichols said volunteers will learn information on various things like patient safety, privacy, services offered by Hospice Touch, plus physical, emotional, social and spiritual issues that people can encounter at the end of life or with chronic illness, effective communication when speaking with patients and family members, and information about grief and loss.

She said volunteers play a vital role in the success of Hospice programs.  “We can’t do it without volunteers,” said Nichols. “It’s just the little things that make a big difference to our patients.”

Nichols said volunteers provide respite for caregivers by staying with the patient while the caregiver is away from their loved one. “This important service provides companionship and support to both the patient and their family.”

Nichols said it takes more than 50 volunteers to coordinate the Hospice programs, which cover Adams, Juneau and Monroe counties.

“Our volunteers often say that they get more out of it (the program) than what they give,” she added.

Nichols said interested volunteers can call her for more information and to register by Oct. 8 at (608) 374-0250.