PVHC Volunteer Services
A Look Back
Gracious and giving community members have formally helped serve Powell's health care needs since 1957, when the 'Gray Ladies' became an important human resource in April of that year.
The Gray Ladies, after special instruction from the Red Cross organization, began helping patients in the hospital with writing letters, reading, conversing, and adding to a patient's comfort whenever asked to do so.
In November of 1982, a newly-chartered auxiliary formed, with the task of setting up and managing the Powell Lifeline, a home emergency alert system. One original member of the Gray Ladies joined this new group of volunteers. Her name was Mamie Hunter. Jackie Payne, wife of the late Dr. Ray Christensen, became the first president of this new health care volunteer organization. At that time, the district purchased 10 Lifeline units. Today, the volunteer organization manages over 100 Lifeline units, some offering mobile and fall-detection capabilities.
Several ladies within the community joined the organization as charter members and some of those original members are still actively involved in helping Powell Valley Healthcare today. One of these ladies is Coleen Metzler. Coleen has served as the president of the Powell Hospital Auxiliary (what is now formally called PVHC Volunteer Services) three different times and has remained a member of the organization for 31 years. She continues to serve as a front desk receptionist in the hospital, the annual October Salad Luncheon committee chair, the chair of employee education scholarships, and in other ways.
Another charter member who continues to serve is Lillian Cline. Lillian began her service as the organization's treasurer, she helped with 'baby services' and was also a member of the 'patient services' committee. Today, Lillian is an honorary member of PVHC Volunteer Services and doesn't actively attend meetings. However, in her 90s, she still volunteers in the PVHC Care Center beauty shop, fixing hair.
Lillian's best friend of more than 60 years, Doris Gernant, who is also in her 90s, joined the ladies auxiliary with Lillian back in 1983. She too is still actively volunteering in the beauty shop.
Sharon Earhart, who served as a charter member, is currently a Powell Medical Foundation Board member. Sharon was the Powell Hospital Auxiliary's first secretary and also helped with the Lifeline program, New Year's Baby recognition, the patient services committee and patient representative committee.
PVHC is very grateful for these three wonderful ladies and all the great people in our community whom have volunteered their time and talents to help the community over the years.
PVHC is proud to say that nearly 110 volunteers help out in the hospital, care center, and at The Heartland Assisted Living, to provide great service and care to our patients and guests. Several men have joined forces with us and help out with various projects in the hospital and care center. From helping with stocking vending machines and transporting recyclables to setting up for luncheons and entertaining in the care center, these guys provide much needed help and we greatly appreciate them.
PVHC Volunteers also raise money through Gift Shop sales, vending machines, and other fundraising activities. The funds are used to help with special projects as well as over $12,000 annually for student and employee education scholarships. Some recent projects include:
- New furniture in the hospital lobby and in the lab waiting room
- Paint for the Orthopedics & Sports Medicine clinic and OB clinic
- The new birthing tub in OB
- OB patient room remodel
- Support of the OB department's new baby warmer equipment
PVHC Volunteer Services is always on the lookout for new members who would like to help the community. Volunteer opportunities include:
- Gift Shop
- Front Desk Reception
- Beauty Shop (care center)
Care center residents enjoy a great service provided by volunteers in the beauty shop. These wonderful dedicated ladies fix hair multiple times every week. Some of them have been doing this for many, many years. If you would like to help with this great service, they can always use help in the beauty shop. The residents so appreciate this service.
- Plant Care
- Magazine Distribution
- Community Blood Drive
- Vending Machines
- Special Projects
- ...and more
If you would like to join us, please call Jim at 754-1104, or Trisha at 754-1259. THANK YOU!