Baystate Mary Lane Outpatient Center
85 South Street|
Ware MA, 01082
Baystate Mary Lane Hospital volunteers revitalize our spirit and strengthen our commitment to the patients, visitors and family members we serve. Our volunteers, ages 15 and over, supplement the professional health care services delivered throughout BMLH. We assign volunteers to areas that best match their interests, skills and experience.
- Respiratory services
- Rehabilitation services
- Clerical support
- Community outreach
- Food & nutrition services
- Gift shop
- Mail room
- Emergency department
- Medical/Surgical unit
- Surgical services
- Oncology services
If you are interested in learning about the volunteer opportunities we currently have available, call the BMLOC Human Resources Department at 413-967-2117.
Baystate Medical Center & Children's Hospital
Marie Saunders, Manager, Volunteer Services
759 Chestnut Street
Springfield MA, 01199
Frequently Asked Questions
Benefits of Volunteering
Volunteer Clearance Process
There are many opportunities for you to make a difference as a volunteer at Baystate Medical Center and other Springfield based entities. This is a brief listing of some of the current areas that might have volunteer vacancies. Other possibilities may be discussed during the interview session. This listing will be updated from time to time.
Volunteering with Infants and Children
There are several areas with Baystate Children's Hospital and Women's Services where volunteer services are used.
Pediatric Specialty Programs
College students majoring in child life, child development, early childhood, or elementary education, or those currently working in or retired from these fields, are encouraged to apply. However, anyone interested in playing or providing arts and crafts to children or interacting with anxious parents are welcome to apply. Please note that our pediatric programs are very popular and open positions may not always be available.
Pedi Pals: Both teen (at least 15 years old) and adults are welcome to apply to this program, which involves comforting and playing with sick children ages infancy through school age in our inpatient setting. Applicants will be interviewed and selected by one of our child life specialists on the Infants & Children's unit. Make sure to mention that you are interested in volunteering with children when you set up an interview appointment.
Pediatric Emergency Department: Our Pediatric ED takes qualified college students and other adults (18 years and older and not in high school) who have the ability and sensitivity to work in an Emergency Department. Selected volunteers must have background experience working with or caring for children, and be able to handle the stressful environment of an emergency department setting. Applicants will be interviewed and selected by one of our child life specialists from the pediatric emergency department.
Baystate Children's Specialty Center on Wason Avenue: Children who receive care for diabetes, seizure disorders, gastrointestinal diseases, and numerous other conditions are treated in this facility. Volunteers provide play opportunities and diversion to children as they and their parents wait for admission to treatment rooms. You may also provide one-on-one play for children who need to stay for longer treatments. The goal is to create a peaceful, welcoming environment and a “fond farewell” when the child and family leave the center. College students and adults are needed for this area. Applicants for this area will be asked to complete a written questionnaire submitted to the supervising child life specialist for review.
Baby Buddies: Applicants ages 18 years (and out of high school) and older may apply to volunteer in our newborn nurseries. Openings are very limited. Those who might want to volunteer in this area should have other areas in mind as a second choice.
Cuddlers: Applicants ages 18 years and older (and out of high school) may apply to volunteer in our Neonatal Intensive Care and Continuing Care units. Volunteers rock, feed, and comfort babies who have had a challenging time after their birth. Volunteers must show sensitivity and understanding of the special care needed for these infants. Recruitment for these volunteers is usually no more than once a year. Due to the overwhelming response to a recent call for volunteers, this program is filled until fall 2017.
NODA (No One Dies Alone) Volunteers
Mature adults are needed to provide a reassuring, non-anxious presence to actively dying patients who do not have sufficient support from family or friends. Volunteers may also provide support to families of actively dying patients to ensure that patients will not be left alone during their dying process if presence and company is desired. Volunteers provide companionship as requested which includes sitting at bedside conveying a reassuring, non-anxious presence and emotional support to patients and families, reading of requested literature, assisting with music or writing letters and assisting with patient and family needs as assessed in collaboration with nursing and other clinical personnel. We recruit for this program several times a year.
Wayfinders and Escort Volunteers
We need volunteers who enjoy helping people and are physically able to walk unassisted for long distances. Volunteers will be stationed at the information desks in the Daly Lobby (main entrance to the hospital), the Chestnut Surgery Center entrance and the Wesson Women's Lobby. These volunteers escort patients and visitors throughout the hospital. These volunteers also push people in wheelchairs when needed. Information Desk volunteers are some of the first people that patients and visitors meet when entering the hospital and therefore need to possess excellent customer service skills. Teens, as well as adults, are welcome to apply for these positions.
Emergency Department Volunteers
Volunteers are needed to provide comfort and support to patients and their families in our Adult Emergency Department. Because we are a Level One Trauma Center, we recruit primarily undergrad or graduate students majoring in pre-med or nursing or those in physician assistant programs. Other interested adults who want to help our patients and families and feel comfortable in a fast paced and often emotionally charged environment are also welcome to apply.
Nursing Unit Volunteers
Various inpatient nursing units are looking for volunteers to help make the patient’s stay a positive and safe experience. As part of the patient care team, volunteers will interact with patients and their visitors and support the units’ goals of keeping patients safe and comfortable. Volunteers play a key role in making the difference between a good hospital stay and an excellent experience. These volunteers can be teens or adults but must have a very outgoing personality with the ability to follow directions, act independently (once oriented to the unit) and be very observant. These volunteers will need to be able to stand for periods of time and independently navigate the nursing unit in a safe and efficient manner.
Volunteers assist staff to help make each patient's stay a positive experience. As part of the patient care team, volunteers assist unit staff with the wellness needs of patients to attain established care team goals. The primary responsibilities focus on ambulating (walking) patients 70 years and older, as well as providing cognitive (mental) stimulation. These interactions help the patients avoid decline in physical and mental functioning while hospitalized, reduce the chance for falls and increase the chance that patients will be able to return to their pre-admission baseline status at time of discharge (avoiding transfers to extended nursing care or rehab facilities whenever possible). Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and out of high school. This assignment is particularly good for students pursuing careers as physician assistants or physical therapists. Anticipated Training Sessions: February 8, May 23, October 5, 2017. When you call for an interview, be sure to indicate that you are interested in the mobility training program.
Chestnut Surgical Center and Endoscopy Suite
The Chestnut Surgical and Endoscopy Suites are used for patients having minor surgery or medical procedures that require monitored sedation. Most patients come in for their procedure and are discharged a few hours later. Volunteers are needed to help escort patients at time of discharge as well as assist nursing staff with other duties within the suites. We have openings for teens (4-7 pm) as well as adults during mornings, afternoons, and early evening. Volunteers must be physically able to push patients in wheelchairs for an extended distance as well as tolerate being on their feet for long periods of time.
We have a few areas that are in need of volunteers who have good office skills. Office settings may require volunteers to do some data entry, make phone calls, and help with filing and office organization. Some assignments are located at the main hospital and others are located within the greater Springfield area.
Family Waiting Rooms
Waiting room volunteers spend time with families in the waiting rooms providing support and general information as needed. In general, these volunteers must be able to walk long distances, use tact and courtesy when interacting with people and be very outgoing and understanding of the stress level the families are under in these areas.We have three family waiting rooms in need of volunteers.
- Our Surgical Family Waiting Room is looking for early risers (Monday-Friday) to cover the early morning shift (6 am-9 am) as well as other time slots throughout the day. Volunteers in the surgical family waiting room also escort family members to the recovery room when requested.
- Our Intensive Care Waiting Room need volunteers who can cover four hour shifts from 10 am-6 pm. We cannot use teen volunteers in this waiting room due to the critical status of patients in the Intensive Care Unit.
- Our Heart and Vascular Critical Care Unit needs volunteers to assist in their waiting room. Volunteers are mostly needed for morning, afternoon, and early evening shifts. We cannot accommodate teens in this position given the critical status of the patients in this area.
Health Information Management Volunteers
The medical records department in our Holyoke location is looking for volunteers to help with filing and other basic clerical duties. Hours can be very flexible here, weekends and evenings included. Volunteers can sit and stand as needed and must be able to lift up to 5 pounds.
Volunteers are needed to assist diners in our hospital’s main café. This placement consists of helping to clear tables once vacated, offering to take trays and dispose of them for people needing assistance (this may include the elderly), and insuring that the overall seating area looks clean and organized. Volunteers may also assist visitors by giving out directions to patient floors or the main lobby.
Volunteers provide therapeutic music for patients, including those who are agitated or anxious, suffering from dementia, are in the last days or hours of life, or for whom music aids in a peaceful transition.
Pet therapy has been shown to reduce anxiety, decrease blood pressure and heart rate, and increase relaxation, socialization, and motivation.
Baystate Franklin Medical Center
, Manager, Volunteer Services
164 High Street and 48 Sanderson Street
Greenfield MA, 01301
BFMC is honored to have over 300 dedicated volunteers doing a variety of tasks in 30 different departments. Assignments are based on the needs of the hospital and to support staff in service to patients. Whenever possible, we try to honor volunteers' requests in regards to scheduling. Volunteers span from students to seniors and range in age from 16 - 90 years old. The process begins with a completed application, continues with an interview, clearances, group orientation and then observing seasoned volunteers to determine the best fit.
Volunteer Tasks May Include:
- Mail room
- Gift shop
- Chaplaincy program
- Reception: front lobby, surgical building and medical practices
- Human Resources
- Surgical Services
- Cardiopulmonary and Cardiac Rehabilitation
- Physicians’ offices
- Emergency Department
- Blood Pressure Clinic and Bloodmobile
- Compiling charts
- Assembling welcome packets
- Volunteer office
- Quilt Makers
- iPad lending Project
- Waiting Room Greeter
- Special Events
- Clerical and office projects
Requirements for Baystate Franklin Volunteers
- You must be at least 16 years of age.
- All volunteers must be medically cleared, pass a background check and attend a hospital policy orientation.
- We require a commitment of once a week for a minimum of 6 months.
To inquire about hospice volunteer opportunities, please call:
50 Maple Street, 3rd Floor
Springfield MA, 01102
Hospice volunteers are vital members of the Hospice Interdisciplinary Team. They have a true desire to help. They are caring, emotionally mature, and comfortable talking about death and dying. By providing respite time and a comforting presence, they can offer support to the entire family. Volunteers are also used by our Palliative Care and Pediatric Palliative Care programs.
Hospice volunteers are thoroughly and comprehensively trained on a range of topics such as emotional support, emergency procedures, universal precautions, and the importance of respecting patient and family rights. Volunteers also learn how to listen more effectively – which may be the most important service a volunteer can provide. Volunteer training sessions are held at all three Baystate Home Health locations in Springfield, Westfield, and Three Rivers, MA.
Examples of volunteer opportunities:
Ancillary: These include healing touch, massage therapy, reiki therapy.
Companion: Companion volunteers are available for weekly visits or on an "as needed" basis for the patient or caregivers. They offer temporary respite for family caregivers, run errands and/or provide transportation to appointments or outings. Friendly visiting, sharing hobbies, special interests, and social outings are among the activities companion volunteers may share. They do not provide personal care; they cannot lift or transfer patients; they cannot administer medication. They do not accept reimbursement from patients or family. Bilingual Companions are also needed for a variety of languages. Bilingual companions are not allowed to provide medical translation/interpretation (Baystate Health has resources for medical interpreters as needed).
Flowers: Every week, flowers are donated from Malta Floral Supply and transported to our offices by a volunteer. Volunteers arrange these flowers into bouquets that are brought to private homes and nursing facilities.
Hairdressing: Volunteer hairdressers provide haircuts for patients who are home-bound or in skilled nursing facilities. They do not do perms, hair-coloring, or other processes.
Legal Counsel: Volunteer attorneys assist patients and their families with legal questions and forms; some examples include obtaining Power of Attorney or guardianship for loved ones.
Music Therapy: Volunteers provide therapeutic music for patients, including those who are agitated or anxious, suffering from dementia, are in the last days or hours of life, or for whom music aids in a peaceful transition.
Pet Therapy: Pet therapy has been shown to reduce anxiety, decrease blood pressure and heart rate, and increase relaxation, socialization, and motivation. This service is usually performed in skilled nursing facilities.
Veterans: Baystate Home Health participates in the "We Honor Veterans" program. Volunteers and staff honor patients who are veterans with a special certificate and token of appreciation. Be sure to let our staff know if a patient is a veteran.
Vigil: Volunteers sit vigil with patients in their last hours so they don't die alone, in the absence of family or friends. This usually occurs in a nursing home setting. Volunteers may also provide support to a family member when the death of their loved one is near.
Over the course of a year, our more than 75 volunteers donate 6,000 hours of their time. Volunteers work in every department at our hospital and at our five community medical centers.
As a volunteer, we offer you great benefits, including food and beverages and free flu shots.
We welcome adult and student (ages 15 and older) volunteers.
How to Volunteer
All applicant will be interviewed, and if selected, placed in a position that suits your interests and our needs. To apply, contact:
Baystate Wing Hospital
40 Wright Street
Palmer, MA 01069