Welcoming Volunteers Back to Bailey-Boushay House

The real meaning of a BBH volunteer’s work is friendship.

Bailey-Boushay House (BBH) is pleased to welcome new volunteers after limiting them for three years during the pandemic. We are so excited to increase the number of volunteers who provide such a vital role to the BBH community.

Volunteers have been part of the culture of compassion since Bailey-Boushay House opened its doors. They fulfill tasks like taking clients and residents on walks and sharing meals, allowing nurses and staff to focus on the client's and residents’ personal and medical needs. However, the real meaning of their work is friendship. 

“Our volunteers’ main goal is to increase the quality of life for our residents and clients and each requires a different level of support because they’re each their own person,” says Stephanie Pietras, manager of volunteer services at BBH. “For some of our residents and clients, our volunteers are the only unpaid people in their life.”

Now in her eighth year of training and managing volunteers at BBH, Stephanie believes the volunteers have one of the most powerful and meaningful roles within the team. It's not an easy job. The clients and residents they serve are often going through difficult times and some are reaching the end of their lives.

“Our volunteers have a profound humanity and dedication to their role. I recently coached a new volunteer who was nervous about being able to fulfill what residents needed. But I told her that on this team, we grow together. And her first shift went beautifully,” Stephanie says.

Stephanie and her team provide a meaningful service at BBH.

BBH has 30 active volunteers and seven who are waiting for training and schedule openings. Her longest-serving volunteer, Mike, will celebrate his 31st year of service in September. Also on Stephanie’s volunteer team are people with all types of backgrounds and specialties – lawyers, researchers, software engineers, realtors, students, death doulas, and a number of retirees. What they all have in common is an open heart.

“In my 35 years of volunteer management, I still enjoy watching people fully embrace the journey and take what they learn about our population and the skills of trauma-informed care, end-of-life tools, challenging behavior conversations and help others live a richer, fuller life because of their time here,” Stephanie says. “Our BBH family is whole because of our volunteers.”