Volunteer Spotlight: Surgery Department

How do volunteers support this department?

Volunteers assist patients and families in the surgery area in many different ways!  Here are just a few examples:

-Escorting patients and families on the day of surgery, especially while accompanying parents from the Operating Room to their waiting area as their child undergoes surgery.

-Covering the desk in the Surgery Family Waiting Room

-Supporting the Pre-Surgery Program, which prepares children and families for upcoming scheduled surgeries through fun medical play, a puppet show (St. Paul campus only), and tour of the surgery department.

Quick Statistics

- The Perioperative Escort volunteer program is growing! In 2010, volunteers in Minneapolis completed 299 service hours as perioperative escort volunteers. In 2011, a similar program was created in St. Paul, and volunteers from both campuses volunteered for a total of 1,563 hours!

– In 2011, volunteers in the Surgery Family Waiting Room at Children’s-Minneapolis interacted with 5,652 inpatient family members; volunteers in the Surgery Family Waiting Room at Children’s-Minnetonka interacted with 6,324 family members.

– Pre-Surgery Program- Across all campuses (St. Paul, Minneapolis and Minnetonka), this program reached a total of 641 families as they prepared for their child to undergo surgery.

Allison Bradee volunteering as a Perioperative Escort

Quotes from Volunteers

“My favorite part of volunteering in the perioperative area, hands down, has to be the amazing staff! I’ve met some of the nicest people through my experiences at Children’s! They are inspirational, and I love to watch them interact with all of the children. My second-favorite has to be the amazing kids that I’m fortunate enough to be able to interact with every Friday morning! I have had nothing but good experiences during my time thus far at Children’s Hospital!”

-Phil Thomas (perioperative volunteer, April 2011-February 2012)

“I enjoy watching the interactions between the staff and children-particularly the efforts made to make sure that the children are comfortable and happy!”

-Tom Klink (perioperative volunteer, September 2011-present)

I really enjoy volunteering at Children’s. Everyone in the surgery unit is nice, friendly, and helpful. My favorite part of volunteering is interacting with the families and trying to make them feel more comfortable during their visit.”

-Jazmine Olson (perioperative volunteer, February 2012-present)

Staff Quotes

“I can’t thank the volunteer team enough for all they do for our families and our staff in surgery.  We miss them terribly when they aren’t able to be here.  It’s one of the things we cover in morning report–“Who is our volunteer today?”–so that we all know who it will be.  I heard [a volunteer] so kindly say to a parent as they left the operating room, “Follow me; we’ll go back to your room now.”  This is such an emotional time for parents.  Often when I’ve escorted parents out, they turn around and around because they really don’t know where to go and are teary.  It was so nice to hear a volunteer providing those kind directions in such a caring voice.  Many thanks!”

-Sue Bauer, Surgery

Thank you, surgery volunteers, for the awesome energy, compassion and dedication that you bring to this volunteer role!

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