I am very grateful for the conference this year. Although the announcement this year came a bit late, AHVRP has heard your concerns and announced the conference location for 2020. I am excited that it will be in my home state of Colorado and can’t wait to see all of you in Denver next year.
I have such cherished memories of the time I spent with those who attended this year. I thought the speakers, breakout sessions and networking were well received. AHVRP has sent surveys out to the attendees of the conference in Dallas and have heard positive and encouraging results. The AHVRP leadership of Todd Ross, our governance and operations manager, Senada Hidic, our education specialist and the 2019 ACPC committee worked so hard to assure all of you had a great conference…and I think they were successful. I think you learn from the feedback you hear and with next year around the corner, they are already keeping those considerations in mind and making plans for an amazing 2020 AHVRP Conference.
I am also grateful for each of you. Our membership is strong and committed to volunteerism in the health care setting. You have such amazing programs, ideas, best practices that need to be shared. We are a group that supports each other and believes in bringing out the best in our volunteers. We need to continue to shout it out that the volunteers are an integral part of the patient experience. I recently had a conversation with the senior director of our patient experience and it was indicated that a patient/family makes a first impression of our hospital within 7 seconds, and a trusting relationship with those they encounter within 40 seconds. Most of our volunteers offer front line customer service and affect that experience of patients/families. The volunteers do a phenomenal job of welcoming and offering that compassionate care to all they meet. We, as leaders, need to continue to encourage, train and support the importance of the volunteer’s role each and every day.
I am forever grateful for the volunteers. I know you are, too. We couldn’t do it without them. The volunteers touch an amazing number of patients and families but are still, in too many ways, the unsung heroes in health care. Be ready to retell the impactful stories of your volunteers in annual reports, newsletters, volunteer appreciation events, however, and wherever you can. I believe our mission includes changing the stereo-typical perceptions that volunteers are just here to “serve” in any way we need. The volunteers are actually here to make a difference each and every day
I read this beautiful quote from DeAnn Hollis: “The heart of a volunteer is not measured in size, but the depth of the commitment to make a difference in the lives of others.” I believe the heart of a volunteer leader is immeasurable. The capacity to open the doors for your volunteers to make a difference in the lives of others in a positive and impactful way by lifting the human spirit makes you an effective advocate for healthcare volunteerism.
2019 AHVRP President