Volunteers with the Schneck Medical Center Guild play a key role in providing services to patients and their families and visitors each year.
Without their hours of service, which totaled 16,000 in 2016, and the donations generated by fundraisers each year, some projects would not happen, a company official said during the guild’s annual volunteer recognition dinner at Woodlawn Life Celebration Centre in Seymour.
Debbie Mann, Schneck’s vice president of finance and chief financial officer, said the hours of service provided by volunteers in 2016 would have cost more than $300,000.
“Over the last three years, the guild has given almost $100,000 a year to different projects we have at Schneck, so that certainly makes a difference,” Mann said.
“The number of volunteer hours this year is almost 1,000 hours more than last year, so that’s pretty amazing,” she said.
Mann said donations from the 104-member guild help make many projects possible, including a $44 million expansion that recently was announced.
Warren Forgey, Schneck’s president and CEO, discussed that project, which will involve 30 new doctors, a five-story building to house them and a parking garage that will hold 400 cars.
Volunteer manager Amy Cockerham said besides the guild’s regular $100,000 donation in 2016, it also gave $75,000 for a project to move the hospital’s pediatric therapy room in the new rehabilitation center on the fourth floor of the outpatient center at the hospital from an office building on South Walnut Street.
“We have several continual projects we are always sustaining, including the shuttle, which had more than 8,000 passengers after just one year of service in July,” Cockerham said.
The guild also supports a junior volunteer program (there were 86 this summer); three Kim Quilleon Varnell Junior Volunteer Memorial Scholarship recipients this year; pediatric toy totes for all pediatric admissions; cancer baskets to newly diagnosed cancer patients; prayer shawls for hospice patients; comfort pillows and drain bags for surgery patients; and scales for patients with heart failure.
The guild uses a discretionary fund through patient services that goes toward providing for a large variety of needs for patients, Cockerham said.
She also recognized volunteers with the most hours of service.
That list included Dave Neuman with 6,000 hours; Pat Blevins, 4,000; and Shirley Reichenbacker, 3,000.
Other volunteers and their hours recognized were Emily Adams, Susan Louden, Catherine Montgomery, Judy Peters and Andrea Zagata, 2,000; Millie Burgmeier and Susan Valverde, 1,000 hours; George Farmer, Helen Lutes and Claudia McAllister, 500 hours; and Mary Carlson, Jennifer Doriot, Bob Doriot, Carol Leveridge, Debbie Meyers, Charlotte Ross, Roger Smith, Susan Spicer and Richard Steele, 100 hours.
The Schneck Medical Center Guild was organized as the Ladies Auxiliary in the days after Schneck Memorial Hospital was dedicated March 23, 1911. The auxiliary, which helped furnish the then-14-bed hospital, had 125 members.
Today, members of the guild man the information desk and the gift shop; serve as registration host or hostess; deliver flowers to patients; transport patients; and serve as Plate Pals providing companionship for patients while they dine. They also help with health fair booths and activities and provide other services.
For information about volunteering at Schneck Medical Center, visit schneckmed.org/ways-to-help/schneck-guild-hospital-volunteers.