NOTE: Due to the tremendous number of applicants, we are currently pausing Volunteer Applications. Volunteer Services will commence receiving volunteer applications on Friday, January 5, 2024.
The partnership between North York General Hospital and our volunteers began in 1966 when an inaugural meeting was held and 500 volunteers were recruited from the community to support our soon to be built hospital. Learn more about the history of Volunteer Services at North York General.
Today, our volunteer program has three unique streams, each making a world of difference for our patients, residents, and their families.
Service volunteers share their time and talent, delivering compassionate and respectful service to our patients, residents, and their families across the hospital's various sites.
Current Volunteer Opportunities:
- Assist with patient and families finding their way around the facility/clinics at the General site
- Assist with our activation program at Seniors' Health Centre
Service Volunteer Program Spotlight: Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP)
Many seniors have problems with their memory, thinking and mobility while in hospital. The Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP) helps keep the mind and body as active as possible as a way to prevent delirium, a mental state that can cause confusion and restlessness.
HELP was originally developed by Dr. Sharon K. Inouye from Yale University’s School of Medicine and is now housed at Harvard University. This evidence based program is used in hospitals around the world as the leading delirium-prevention program for older patients. The goals of the program are to prevent delirium, to maintain the cognitive and physical functioning of patients throughout their hospital stay, to support older patients to return home from the hospital as independently as possible and to prevent unplanned returns to the hospital.
Under the guidance of our Elder Life Specialist, volunteers receiving training to support enrolled patients by providing the following protocols:
- Daily Visiting through increased orientation and social support
- Early Mobilization by encouraging patients to keep moving
- Hearing & Vision Support by offering access to glasses and/or hearing amplifiers
- Therapeutic Engagement through meaningful activities that keep the brain active
- Meal Support such as helping to open packages, tray set-up, spoon to mouth feeding, socialization, and encouraging fluids when needed.
Patient Experience Partners (PXPs)
Patient Experience Partners, or PXPs (formerly Patient and Family Advisors, or PFAs) are volunteers who support a larger role for patients, families, and caregivers at NYGH by placing their voices at the centre of how we design and deliver health care services. PXPs also help NYGH engage North York’s many communities in new ways to better meet their needs. Learn more.
Spiritual Care Volunteers
Faith Visitors and On-Call Chaplains are important volunteer roles within the Spiritual Care team. Spiritual Care volunteers support our inpatients at the hospital and our residents at Seniors’ Health Centre.