Who Can Volunteer?
Volunteers are ordinary people from various backgrounds who are passionate about giving back to their community through helping others. Their time, commitment and compassionate care help make somebody's journey with a terminal and/or life-limiting illness more manageable and meaningful. They are trained in the provision of hospice care and understand the importance of dignity, independence and comfort, and always respect confidentiality, beliefs, choices, faith and culture.
Is Training Provided?
Volunteers are interviewed, screened and receive 30 hours of provincially standardized and professional training in hospice palliative care through a combination of in-person and online training sessions. Volunteers who wish to work with children will complete an additional 24 hours of training to understand and support the special needs of families and children facing terminal and life-limiting illness, and loss. All volunteers are supported by various staff members throughout their placement experience. Training is free but requires a time commitment. Certificate of completion provided.
What Will Be Your Commitment?
In our Community Based Hospice Program, Volunteers provide a maximum of 4 hours per week in the evenings or daytime, depending on their availability and the client's needs. At Emily’s House, shifts can be from 3-5 hours in length, weekly or monthly, depending on what program you are involved in. Volunteers are requested to make a six-month to one-year commitment depending on the role.
What Does the Role Look Like?
Volunteers provide practical, non-medical, emotional and spiritual support to people living with life-limiting illnesses or who are palliative/end-of-life. Responsibilities may include:
Testimonials from the Volunteers:
"I just wanted to reach out to you this day to thank you for allowing me to join the PAC team, and in so doing, continue to do the work that makes my heart smile. The training on Saturday was enlightening. The people who spoke to us were amazing, and did much to broaden my understanding of pediatric palliative care, and my role therein. I am excited to attend next Saturday's training, and to move forward with my role as a volunteer in this extraordinary organization. Thank-you again, and please know that my gratitude is overwhelming."
-Recent Children's Trained Volunteer
"You gave me a lot in the classes I took to become a recognized volunteer with your organization. Thank you. Much thought was put into who I was to work with."
–Vera, reflecting on the Volunteer Training provided by PAC
"Thank you again for spearheading this wonderful award for me. I can't tell you how much this means to me. It was probably my proudest moment. I have loved working with Philip Aziz Centre and everyone I have met through this lovely experience over the past years. It has enriched my life beyond anything else I've experienced. For that I am truly grateful."
– Laurie, recipient of the June Callwood Award for Volunteering
“Volunteering at Emily's House and working with such an incredible team is the most fulfilling experience I have ever had, and I appreciate you all so much.”
“I was privileged, as a volunteer with PAC, to reassure my client that his life and his work, his love for his spouse and children was of great value and much appreciated, even though he was no longer able to do the things that had brought so much pleasure throughout his career. Each time I have an experience such as this I feel grateful for the joy of human relationships; for the honour we have of interacting with people of all ages who are facing life and death challenges; to reassure them that their life is special and worthy of celebration. It is a gift that we can offer. It is part of the sacred ground on which we walk with care and sensitivity. I am grateful for this opportunity”.