A look back
Gracious and giving community members have formally helped serve Powell's healthcare needs since 1957, when the Gray Ladies became an important human resource.
The Gray Ladies, after special instruction from the Red Cross organization, began helping hospital patients to write letters, read, converse and add to their comfort whenever asked to do so.
In November 1982, a newly-chartered auxiliary formed, tasked with setting up and managing the Powell Lifeline, a home emergency alert system. Mamie Hunter, an original member of the Gray Ladies, joined this new group of volunteers. Jackie Payne, wife of the late Dr. Ray Christensen, became the first president of this new healthcare volunteer organization. At that time, the district purchased 10 Lifeline units. Today, the volunteer organization manages over 100 Lifeline units, some of which offer mobile and fall-detection capabilities.
Several ladies within the community joined the organization as charter members, and some of those original members still actively help 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 terms and has been a member of the organization for 35 years. She continues to serve as a front desk hospital receptionist, the chair of employee education scholarships, and in other ways.
Another active charter member 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. 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 in 1983. She too still actively volunteers in the beauty shop.
PVHC is very grateful for these three wonderful ladies and all the great people in our community who have volunteered their time and talents to help the community over the years.
PVHC is proud to say that nearly 100 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 to stock vending machines and transport recyclables to setting up luncheons and providing entertainment in the care center, these men 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 and provide more than $10,000 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).
- Plant care.
- Magazine distribution.
- Community blood drive.
- Vending machines.
- Special projects.
- And more.