Health Care

Health Care Heroes: Volunteer

By Staff Reports, posted Oct 20, 2017
Here are the finalists in the 2017 Health Care Heroes Volunteer category.

Honors a volunteer at a health care provider or other health-related organization who is considered exemplary by people within those organizations.

Common Thread Ministry

ORGANIZATION: Pine Valley United Methodist Church

WHAT THE NOMINATOR SAID: “With the tagline, ‘Made with love; given for comfort,’ the Common Thread Ministry is a women’s circle program at Pine Valley United Methodist Church in Wilmington. Their mission is to provide patients with advanced illness, as well as their families, a feeling of comfort and a sense of peace. They do this through the simple gift of a pillowcase.

Each month, 15 women gather at the church on Shipyard Boulevard to work together in a labor of love and compassion … cutting, pinning, sewing, ironing and finally praying over the pillowcases that will eventually be presented to patients at Lower Cape Fear Hospice, Partners in Caring AIDS clients or any homebound individual that they learn about.

Each pillowcase created by the Common Thread Ministry comes from a specific fabric adorned with images of colorful butterflies. The women then add a bright ribbon and a scripture verse. Since its inception in 2009, the Common Thread Ministry has provided over 4,500 pillowcases to terminally ill patients.”

(Common Thread Ministries chair Jeanne Scott shown above.)

– Rose Hunt, LCFH volunteer program manager

Gloria & Mike Foss

TITLE: Volunteers

ORGANIZATION: Novant Health Brunswick Medical Center

WHAT THE NOMINATOR SAID: “In 2015, Gloria and Mike Foss, volunteers at Novant Health Brunswick Medical Center, helped expand our pet therapy program from Wagging Wednesdays to Wagging Welcome to now a full-on pet therapy program with visits every week day. As volunteers, Gloria and Mike have shown exceptional dedication and service to the pet therapy program.

They have dedicated 884 hours, including 600 hours of initial implementation, to helping run the pet therapy program. The implementation hours included visiting two other Novant Health facilities to observe their pet therapy processes, preparing record books, preparing the pet therapy supply cart and training of pet therapy assistant volunteers and handlers.

There are currently eight dogs participating in the pet therapy program, two of which belong to Gloria and Mike.

Gloria and Mike have enhanced the care and lives of many of the patients, individuals and team members at Novant Health Brunswick Medical Center. They have greatly met and improved the critical needs in our community by creating a positive enjoyable experience in unknown and scary circumstances.”

Shelbourn Stevens, Novant Health Brunswick Medical Center president

Amy Hermann

TITLE: Founder

ORGANIZATION: Wilmington Childhood Cancer Support Group

WHAT THE NOMINATOR SAID: In 2012, Amy Hermann began a group in Wilmington that no one ever wants to hear they are eligible to join. After her son Jacob was diagnosed with childhood leukemia, Amy believed that families in Wilmington with children who were fighting childhood cancer would all benefit from knowing and supporting one another. Since that moment, Amy has passionately thrown herself into improving the quality of life for families who have a child battling cancer. To date there are over 50 families involved in the Wilmington Childhood Cancer Support Group.

When a child from the Wilmington area is diagnosed with cancer, Amy makes sure that child and family never feel like they are facing the battle alone. Amy connects the parents of newly diagnosed childhood cancer patients to other parents who have had children with the same kind of cancer. She connects families with local resources.
Amy has organized almost monthly “Cancer Mom” and “Cancer Dad” dinners/meetings for the last five years.

As a Cancer Mom, I know firsthand that Amy’s volunteer efforts in the Wilmington community have made a difference in the lives of childhood cancer patients and their families.”

Lisa Cunningham, “Cancer Mom”
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