Hurley Auxiliary Marks 56 Years, Gave 34,000 Hours In 2011
Feb. 21-In 2011, the 150 members of the Hurley Medical Center Auxiliary volunteer group donated 34,000 hours of service work. Today, about 60 members of the group celebrated the 56th birthday of the auxiliary and applauded the $100,000 raised this past year. Each Hurley Medical Center volunteer was adorned with a pink shirt, celebrating the hours of service they put in and the difference it made.
“A small group can accomplish big things,” said Lisa Hasselbach, director of volunteer services at Hurley. “This group can provide comfort measures at the hospital that we wouldn’t be able to offer. Sometimes, a volunteer might be the first person you see when you come in and the last person you see when you leave...I don’t think the hospital could run without them.”
The volunteers with the Auxiliary work in 19 different service areas, including the cancer action team, guest relations, the goodie cart, lobby shop and the emergency department, among others. About 40 volunteers are working on any given day, Hasselbach said.
For more than 30 years, Claire Shaft of Flint has spent her time with Hurley volunteering in the surgical lounge, talking with families and trying to make their time a little less stressful. “I like interacting with the people,” said Shaft, 86. “You can tease with some of the people. If they’re having a bad time, you can give them a hug and talk with them.”
Hurley Medical Center Auxiliary volunteers celebrate the 56th birthday of the group at the Bethel United Methodist Church in Flint
The volunteers in the surgical lounge keep track of where families are so they can be reached easily when news of their loved ones is available, serve coffee, hot chocolate and tea, along with simply interacting with the 35 to 40 people who might be waiting for someone to get out of surgery.
Melany Gavulic, Hurley’s interim president and chief executive officer, attended the celebration and accepted on the hospital's behalf the $100,000 check to help pay for the new trauma center. The auxiliary volunteers, who are among about 600 total volunteers at the hospital, are extremely dedicated, Gavulic said. “They are so incredibly dedicated and we are so lucky to have them,” Gavulic said. “I was not shocked to hear the number of volunteer hours in this group, but I was shocked to hear the sheer number of volunteers in this group.”
But many of the volunteers feel they are just as lucky to be there. Pat and Dick Foor of Grand Blanc have volunteered at the hospital since 1989 and said they plan to continue for as long as they can. Working in the hospital’s lobby shop, the pair interacts with staff and families of patients on a regular basis, which is what they love, they said. “It gives you a sense of purpose. It’s a way to be of service,” said Pat Foor, 87, who volunteers once a week. “It gives you a sense of being useful. It lets you feel like your of value.” The job fits them perfectly, said Dick Foor, 85, who volunteers twice a week. He says he's grateful to have the opportunity and be able to interact with so many great people on a regular basis, he said. “I don’t just want to sit at home and do nothing,” said Dick Foor. “We give to somebody else and they give to us.”
To read the complete article in The Flint Journal/MLive, click here.
For more information on how to volunteer at Hurley, visit the Hurley Foundation’s website at hurleyfoundation.org. For more information, contact Lisa Hasselbach at (810) 262-9152 or firstname.lastname@example.org.