Letter: Volunteering at KGH not what it used to be

Turnover of volunteers approaches 90 per cent and the organization as I knew it has all but disappeared.

To the editor:

I don’t believe I’m exaggerating when I say that Kelowna General Hospital and its staff is one of the top facilities in all of North America. I remember about 18 years ago KGH had what was recognized as one of  the best, if not the best volunteer organizations in Kelowna and perhaps further afield. It was then that I joined the KGH Volunteer Team.

I was proud to be accepted by a first class organization, with first class training, supervision, and one where I felt truly appreciated. A dress code separated the volunteers from other staff and the general public. Regular meetings were held to keep everyone up to date and cognizant of changes in  treatment areas, rules, and regulations, etc. The volunteer department was run in a very professional manner.

I was told at that time, approximately 1,500 names were on the KGH list of volunteers and approximately another 1,000 in community care centres in Kelowna, West Kelowna and areas.

I don’t know what the numbers are today, but I do know the the volunteer organization of KGH today has dropped significantly. Hypocrisy abounds. Turnover of volunteers approaches 90 per cent and the organization as I knew it has all but disappeared. Once a year, volunteers are ‘honoured’ at a tea and recognition given to those with a number of years experience.

The rest of the time, appreciation is received from staff, patients and the public. Sadly, the appreciation ends there as volunteer supervisors treat the volunteers almost as ‘low life.’ That is not an exaggeration and can be attested to by many current volunteers.

It seems the administration look to education and perhaps degrees, ignoring completely people skills to obtain volunteer supervisors. A severe case of trying to put square pegs in round holes. Numerous volunteers with as many as 25 years and more have terminated because of the above. Honesty among the volunteer supervisors is a lost attribute.

Jeff Johnson, Kelowna



Just Posted

Arbitrated settlement for Kelowna jail guards

Details of arbitration settlement in contract dispute not released

New boss at Kelowna’s Flair Airlines

Flair’s founder and president Jim Rogers steps down after selling shares in company

Okanagan nurse assists Rohingya refugees

Crystal Grymaloski volunteers with Samaritan’s Purse disaster response mission in Bangladesh

Accident at busy Kelowna intersection

There are reports of a two vehicle accident on Highway 97 leading through Kelowna

Inquiry underway in Kelowna murder case

A preliminary inquiry is taking place for the man accused in the 2014 death of Christopher Ausman

Kelowna artist creates fundraiser for a friend

Artist Laurie Koss was inspired by her friend’s cancer battle to help her keep fighting

Premier offers condolences to family of boy, 15, killed in Vancouver crossfire

John Horgan: ‘No stone is to be left unturned until we find the perpetrator of this heinous crime’

VIDEO: Explorers uncover Canada’s deepest cave in Fernie

The cave, named Bisaro Anima, was confirmed to have broken the record on New Year’s Day

Canadian junior captain returns to Rockets lineup

Dillon Dube will be back in Kelowna’s lineup Wednesday night after world juniors and bout of flu

Waters: For Trump words speak louder than actions

U.S. president’s first year in office marked more by what he said than what he did

Letter: Many share Hodge’s thoughts on Trump

Kelowna letter-writer says Charlie Hodge was on the mark in his take on Donald Trump

Column: RRSP a good choice for first time buyers

Kelowna mortgage brokers examine the rules around using your RRSP as down payment

Community lends a hand after fire

Fundraiser to aid fire victim’s wife

Vernon to host largest Special Olympics B.C. Winter Games in 2019

Games to be held Feb. 21-23, with more than 800 athletes expected to take part

Most Read