Seniors who are being cared for in residential facilities, foster homes or nursing centers sometimes face problems with their care. Families may want to help but are not sure how.

That’s where Certified Volunteer Ombudsmen come in. They become their voice, working to make the system responsive to their needs and wishes. Ombudsmen investigate the resident’s concerns and then work with facility staff and/or others, as appropriate, until their concerns have been resolved.

The services provided are free and confidential for the resident. No cost training is provided for volunteers who are asked to give four hours per week including meetings, reporting, visiting the facility and helping to resolve issues.

Volunteers go through a screening process and are desperately needed in Douglas County. If you are willing to volunteer in this way, send in your application for the training classes that are coming in May.

Your application is good for a year so if you are not available now you can receive the training later. For more details call Natascha at 971-600—6149 or log on to www.oltco.org

Mercy Medical Center is looking for volunteers in the following stations:

  • Volunteer Dischargers to assist the nursing staff by taking discharged patients, via wheelchair, to their vehicles, assist with escorting patients to their destination within the hospital and assist with the delivery of flowers, inner hospital transports and guest transports, as time allows.
  • Palliative Care volunteers to work under the guidance of the Palliative Care nursing staff, assisting with clerical support and providing non-nursing patient comfort care. Must be sensitive to problems caused by illness/stress and be able to work with minimal direction or supervision.
  • Spiritual Care volunteers who are willing to serve, in a non-judgmental and sympathetic manner, those who are experiencing ill health, to respond compassionately to patient (and family) needs and concerns, to pray for or with those who desire prayer and to share comfort, hope, encouragement and humor as needed.

All the volunteers must be willing to serve on a scheduled basis. If you can help in any of these areas call Michelle at 541-677-4465.

Salvation Army is looking for help in the warehouse and retail store. Both are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. If you have questions call Kristy at 541-248-2585.

Douglas County Senior Services Meal Program serves meals and also delivers hot meals to shut-ins from nine dining sites throughout the county. Drivers and back-up drivers for the meals-on-wheels deliveries receive mileage reimbursement and are needed in Winston, Glide, Yoncalla, Riddle, Glendale and Reedsport. Kitchen helpers are needed in Winston, Glide, Sutherlin, Yoncalla and Reedsport.

The Roseburg Court House is still looking for four volunteer greeters on weekdays. You can pick the day and hours that fit your schedule. Training is provided. For this station as well as the dining sites listed above, call 541-440-3677.

Ada Duncan is a volunteer coordinator for Douglas County.

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