On a normal day, many of Capital Caring Health’s 1,000-plus corps of volunteers provide comfort and companionship to patients by reading or singing to them, lending an ear, and providing in-person support to families who have lost a loved one. But the past four weeks have been anything but normal, as we are dealing with a “new normal” throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
As we adhere to social distancing guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Capital Caring Health Volunteers are currently unable to meet and visit patients in person.
Now volunteers are answering the call to serve in new ways – from sewing masks and gowns and assembling face shields to delivering flower baskets, care packages and writing letters to patients and their loved ones who may be experiencing social isolation.
As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, below are examples of new ways Capital Caring Health’s volunteers are reaching out to meet the needs of our patients and their families:
- Students home from college are delivering locally grown flowering plants to the porches and stoops of families who recently faced the unimaginable loss of their child. These plants were grown by adults from the Rappahannock Adult Activities organization in Fredericksburg, Virginia.
- College students are also providing technical support by phone and online to help patients and families utilize technology for tele-health and volunteer visits that include friendly chats, inspiration and entertainment.
- Volunteers have assembled 1,000 face shields, 1,200 face masks, and have made 140 cloth isolation gowns, and 200-plus hair covers/medical caps to support clinical teams throughout Capital Caring Health.
- Volunteers are assembling and delivering care packages including books, puzzles and healthy treats to pediatric hospice patients and their families to provide comfort and support.
- High school students are volunteering with the new Capital Caring Health Caring Crew initiative to help alleviate social isolation among senior citizens in the community who are homebound and currently have limited, if any, interaction with friends and family members. Students are writing letters and sending personal messages of support and drawings to seniors.
Learn more about our volunteer program on our website at www.capitalcaring.org. Learn more about supporting Capital Caring Health’s Emergency Relief Fund, which provides critical resources to cover the additional expenses that arise during these difficult times, at https://www.capitalcaring.org/emergency-relief-fund/.
Photos of Capital Caring Health Volunteers in Action: Volunteers recently delivered 30-plus packages to pediatric hospice patients and their families to provide comfort and support; made more than 1,200 face masks to support clinical teams; and delivered flower baskets to families who recently faced the unimaginable loss of their child.
About Capital Caring Health
Capital Caring Health is one of the leading nonprofit providers of elder health, hospice, and advanced illness care for persons of all ages in the mid-Atlantic region. A member of a national network of 70 nonprofit hospice providers, our mission is to provide patients and their families with advanced illness care that is second to none. We also have special hospice teams serving children and veterans. On an annual basis, we serve over 7,000 hospice patients and provide more than $3 million in charity care to those who are uninsured and have nowhere else to turn. Almost 90 cents out of every dollar goes to caring for patients and their families. Our website, www.capitalcaring.org, is available in English, Spanish, and Korean plus offers 24/7 Live Chat. Since the beginning of hospice care over 40 years ago, we have served 120,000 patients and their families in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
24-Hour Care Line: (800) 869-2136 www.capitalcaring.org