Volunteer Roles & Time Commitment

KHSC volunteer
Providing support and information to patients and family members is an important role filled by KHSC volunteers.

Volunteer opportunities fall into one of three general categories across two hospital sites.

Working Directly with Patients

Depending on your interests, skills, and role, working directly with patients may involve: providing diversional activities (playing cards or games, making crafts, reading together, etc.), reminiscing, providing comfort measures, playing music, walking with patients, providing support and respite for families, and more.

Liaison and Information

Volunteers in these roles provide information, directions, and support to patients and visitors at the main entrances to Hotel Dieu Hospital and Kingston General Hospital, as well as in other specialized areas of the hospital such as the Intensive Care Unit.

Supporting Fundraising Activities

Volunteers in these roles greet customers, facilitate sales, and replenish supplies in businesses operated by the KGH Auxiliary or Volunteer Services to HDH site, including the cafés and gift shop.

To learn more about the KGH Auxiliary, click here.

To learn more about the KHSC Volunteer Services to the Hotel Dieu Hospital Site, click here.

 

Opportunities NOT available through Volunteer Services at KHSC

  • Research opportunities
  • Job shadowing health care professionals
  • Job shadowing executive leadership
  • Spending time in the OR
  • Opportunities in Dentistry, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy and Speech Language Pathology
  • A position created for a specific individual (ideas are always welcome but they are vetted, developed, trialed and offered to all current volunteers)

Are there limitations to what a volunteer can do?

Absolutely. Volunteers are provided with a description that outlines the duties for the position they are assuming. Many of these positions have limitations specific to that role but there are also some generic limitations for all KHSC volunteers.

Volunteers are not permitted to:

  • Provide any treatment or give advice regardless of your training or education; a patient's medical questions must be redirected to a staff member
  • Have access to patient information beyond the scope of the volunteer role
  • Accept gifts or gain financial benefits from volunteering
  • Solicit donations from community members or businesses without permission from Volunteer Services
  • Purchase or donate items for a clinic until you have checked with Volunteer Services to ensure the item is appropriate & safe
  • Perform duties that are normally performed by employees

Expected time commitment

  • The weekly commitment can vary anywhere from one to four hours depending on the needs of the program
  • We have weekday, evening and weekend options
  • We ask for a minimum commitment of one-shift per week for a minimum of six months
  • We accommodate firm and flexible weekly schedules and are open to discussion with snowbirds, cottagers, travelers, and other schedule alternatives

What happens if I cannot commit to the same day and time each week?

We have a flexible scheduling option for volunteers who find it challenging to commit to the same day and time each week. Volunteers are still expected to commit weekly by visiting the online schedule to pick shifts that match with their availability at the time.

Can I still volunteer if I go away for the winter or summer?

Yes. We appreciate that people have busy lives and we do our best to accommodate breaks in service. For any breaks in service that are longer than a month, the volunteer provides an estimated return date and they are put on a leave of absence.

We attempt to find a temporary replacement for the shift during the volunteer’s break but we can’t guarantee that a volunteer will return to the same program and shift time. If the shift is picked up by another volunteer during the leave, we will work with the returning volunteer to arrange a new placement.