Can You Spare 5 Minutes Today?
“I am so proud to be a part of this organization. Acclaim Health is very appreciative of each and every single volunteer.”
“Can you spare 5 minutes today?” – a simple question on a brochure while browsing the library brought Nancy into the Tele-Touch world. Initially, in search of some rewarding volunteer work, Nancy’s experience with Acclaim Health began in 2000. For more than twenty years, Nancy has continued volunteering, having some clients on her roster for over ten years!
“You really become a member of the client’s family. There are times they want to discuss issues with me or seek advice from me,” shared Nancy. “They are so appreciative to have someone to talk to about these things that they maybe wouldn’t be able to talk to their family about.”
Tele-Touch volunteers connect with their clients according to a pre-arranged schedule. Depending on the client’s wishes, it may be a quick phone call to make sure the client is up and about or just a friendly chat.
“This program is amazing because I essentially support people from anywhere,” shared Nancy. “As long as I had access to a telephone, I could be there to support someone.”
When all of our volunteers join, they undergo a training session to ensure they feel comfortable with their tasks and ensure they are the right fit for our clients. Depending on the area they will be volunteering in, different orientation sessions take place.
“At first, I underwent a volunteer training program; it was a very positive experience as they put a lot of care into the volunteers,” shared Nancy. “Acclaim Health really makes it so easy to be a volunteer. Setting everything up for you and supporting you if ever you need help. It is very reassuring.”
Volunteering allows you to make a significant impact in other people’s lives. However, it is often overlooked how special and rewarding the impact volunteering has on your own life. You get the chance to build a relationship with people in your community you would never have met otherwise. You hear stories and create memories that both parties can cherish.
“Volunteering has had an impact on my own life tremendously,” shared Nancy. “You really become a member of the client’s family and learn so much along the way on different topics that the people you are speaking to are passionate about.”
The pandemic has left many people feeling more isolated than ever. Tele-touch has been a safe way our volunteers can stay connected with their clients, helping reduce that social isolation at a time is needed most.
“During the pandemic, I have been made to feel by the people I have called even more valuable as a resource in people’s lives,” shared Nancy. “They appreciated it more than ever, and it just as special for me as well.”
A phone call might seem like a simple thing, but it can bring friendship, comfort, and security for older adults who are isolated and lonely. Without amazing volunteers like Nancy, many in our community wouldn’t have that outlet. Acclaim Health has recently celebrated its incredible volunteers during Volunteer Appreciation Week (April 19th – 25th, 2021). Be sure to check out the list of recognized volunteers here: acclaimhealth.ca/volunteer-appreciation