What Do Volunteers Do?
Hospice & Palliative Care, Inc. was founded by a group of volunteers committed to making a profound difference in our community. Volunteers continue to play an essential role and make vital contributions to our daily operations. Here are some of the many ways you can choose to help.

Patient/Family Volunteer

Patient/family volunteers are assigned to patients and their families in the patient’s own home, a nursing home, hospital or other alternate living facility, including our Siegenthaler Center, a four-bed hospice residence. Assignments may require a minimal time commitment, such as a short telephone call once a week to ask if the family needs any help; or a greater time commitment, such as visiting the patient weekly for a few hours. No matter how you help, it’s impossible to overstate how much this support means to the patient and family and to the Hospice team working with them.

Siegenthaler Center Volunteer

Volunteers assigned to the Siegenthaler Center assist in day-to-day Center operations by preparing and serving meals, visiting with patients and families, and performing a variety of light housekeeping duties. You may also choose to act as a receptionist at the front desk, greeting and directing visitors. Volunteers can select assignments that fit the busiest of schedules.

Bereavement Volunteers

Hospice provides support to the bereaved for a period of 13 months following the death of our patients. You may serve the bereaved in a variety of ways:

  • Bereavement Group Facilitators—Provide support and guidance in a group setting by acting as a facilitator for one of our many bereavement groups.
  • Bereavement Telephone Support—Provide support, companionship and conversation to the bereaved. Through guided conversation and good listening skills, you provide the bereaved an opportunity to “tell their story”, explore their grieving process, and offer much-needed support.

Administrative Volunteer

For those volunteers who prefer to work in an office setting, we offer many clerical opportunities at our New Hartford facility on Middle Settlement Road. You can do any office job—answering telephones, acting as a receptionist, data input, filing, transcribing, computer work, mailing assembly, and general office assistance.

Other Volunteer Opportunities

  • The Baker’s Dozen—Coordinated by a leadership volunteer, a group called “The Baker’s Dozen” delivers fresh baked goods daily to the Siegenthaler Center. Provide patients with the opportunity to offer their visitors home-baked confections, just as they would in their own homes.
  • Fundraising and Special Event Volunteers—Assist the Community Support Services Staff at special events or one of many fundraising activities.
  • Companionship—Provide friendship to patients and their caregivers in their homes, or accompany patients or their caregivers on outings.
  • Crafters—Following a simple pattern, make dream catchers for our children’s bereavement group.
  • Cosmetology—Licensed cosmetologists and barbers can help our patients feel their best with basic services such as shampoo, cut and set.
  • Creative Writers—If you have a love for creative writing, patients, families, volunteers and staff will tell you their stories. Use your skill to translate their oral histories into a written document. Hospice staff will complete final editing, typing and formatting.
  • Eucharistic Ministers—Provide Communion to our patients in their homes or other facilities.
  • Gardening/Yard Work—The grounds around the Hospice & Palliative Care building are designed to provide a nurturing, private environment for patients, families, staff and volunteers. You can help by planting flowers and shrubs, watering, weeding and maintaining the garden areas around the Hospice building. Some volunteers enjoy mowing lawns and raking leaves for patients.
  • Health Fairs—Attend health fairs, passing out brochures, listening to people’s stories when they visit the Hospice display table.
  • Massage Therapy—Are you a New York State Licensed Massage Therapist? Enhance the patients’ quality of life, assist in promoting a sense of well being, and reduce the physical and emotional effects of stress or tension by providing massages to our patients.
  • Meals—Prepare and deliver meals for patients and their families, usually one meal a week. This can be as simple as packaging and sharing an extra portion of what you have prepared for yourself or your family.
  • Pet Care—Assist patients and their families in caring for their pets. This may include feeding, walking or cleaning up after a pet.
  • Pet Therapy—Volunteers with credentialed therapy dogs provide friendly visits to patients and their families. Enrich patients’ lives and spark reminiscences about dogs the patient has had in their lifetime.
  • Sitters—Provide a comforting presence to patients who are restless or agitated, ensuring their safety.
  • Transportation—Drive patients or caregivers to their appointments, both medical and business. You may also transport family members to visit patients in the hospital, nursing home or the Siegenthaler Center.
  • Veterans—Provide support to veterans who are hospice patients. You are able to relate to your fellow veterans in a special way due to your shared military experience.

We have a role designed just for you, and welcome your ideas for new programs. You may choose one or several positions of interest to you. Volunteering is a great opportunity to try new things, learn new skills, and broaden your horizons. Have questions? Learn more about volunteering.