VNA expands volunteer program | CraigDailyPress.com

VNA expands volunteer program

Tamera Manzanares/For the Saturday Morning Press

Billie Jacobs has been a volunteer for more than 30 years, working mostly with seniors and hospice-related programs. In 2004, Billie became a volunteer with hospice at the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association, where she spends time with clients and does anything she can — grocery shopping, errands and cleaning — to help their families.

Jacobs' compassion and people skills have been an asset to the program and, in return, Billie has enjoyed the heart-felt relationships she's developed as a volunteer.

"It's just a feeling of fulfillment," she said. "You've accomplished something that is good and has helped someone else."

Each volunteer has a unique set of skills and interests that can benefit others in a multitude of ways. To date, VNA volunteers have primarily provided assistance with fundraising, client support and other aspects of hospice. More VNA programs now will benefit from volunteers' support through the organization's recently expanded Volunteer Services Program.

"We are fortunate to live in a community where people so willingly give their time to help others," said Mindy Fontaine, volunteer coordinator.

The VNA has locations in Steamboat Springs and Craig and offers a range of public health and disease-prevention programs. The organization operates Community Health Centers in both locations and The Haven Assisted Living facility in Hayden.

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Volunteer possibilities can be tailored to volunteers' interests. Potential opportunities include helping patients at the Community Health Center fill out paperwork or spending time with seniors at The Haven, perhaps doing activities or showing them how to use email and smartphones.

Volunteers may prefer behind-the-scenes work, such as landscaping, holiday decorating or facility maintenance or helping with office work and mailings. Volunteers also are needed for the annual Daffodils Hospice fundraiser and other events.

"Giving time is just as significant as writing a check," she said. "We want volunteers to feel as connected to the VNA as we are to them."

A recruitment event will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday at Sunset Meadows I.

For more information about the program, call 970-871-7609.

Tamera Manzanares is the marketing coordinator at the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association. She can be reached at tmanzanares@nwcovna.org.

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