Volunteers return to CHI Saint Joseph during Volunteer Week


LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – It’s been more than a year since CHA Saint Joseph Health paused its volunteer program due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

But in a toast toward some hint of returning to normal, volunteers will again be at Saint Joseph East, Saint Joseph Hospital and Women’s Hospital at Saint Joseph East to begin providing in-person service.

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The week of April 19 is National Volunteer Week – a week that honors and thanks the thousands of volunteers across the United States who provide services to local organizations and communities – and during this week, an estimated 325 volunteers will return to Flaget Memorial Hospital, Saint Joseph Berea, Saint Joseph East, Saint Joseph Hospital, Saint Joseph Jessamine, Saint Joseph London, Saint Joseph Mount Sterling and Women’s Hospital at Saint Joseph East.

Many of the volunteers have received the COVID-19 vaccination.

During the pandemic, they continued their volunteer efforts virtually, including calling patients during the in-person hiatus and supporting patients and caregivers in other ways.

To celebrate the return of volunteers, each facility will hold a small internal event to welcome them back.

“These volunteers always go above and beyond to help our patients and their families, as well as our own physicians and staff, and our facilities just haven’t been the same without them during the pandemic,” said Leslie Smart, CFRE, president, Saint Joseph Hospital Foundation.

“We have all missed their cheerful smiles and positive attitudes, and cannot thank them enough for continuing to step up to help us virtually when we needed it the most. We look forward to welcoming them back into our facilities.”

CHI Saint Joseph Health volunteers help with a variety of tasks at the hospitals, including staffing the information desk, emergency department, surgery waiting area and gift shop; delivering and labeling mail; escorting patients; performing clerical work and providing pastoral care services.