The following story is an example of how volunteers enrich the House of Welcome Adult Day Services program, as well as just one of the many ways in which participants are still able to contribute and give to others.
One of our day program participants is almost completely deaf due to progressive hearing loss. Her cognitive functioning is only moderately impaired, but due to her severe hearing loss she needs extra attention to participate in activities. One-to-one activities are especially effective, because communication can be facilitated by writing things down for her to read.
A special relationship has developed between this participant and a volunteer. They are both knitters. The volunteer took on the special project, together with the partiticpant, of knitting a baby afghan for the volunteer’s newborn great nephew, to be given to him at his christening. Without revealing her identity in order to protect confidentiality, the volunteer took pictures of just the participant’s hands while knitting so she could share the story with the baby’s parents. She also prepared a booklet for the child with the story and pictures of how the afghan was made, together with her “friend” at House of Welcome. The participant and her daughter enjoyed seeing pictures of the baby along the way and at his christening with the afghan.[SOURCE: Summer 2011 Newsletter, House of Welcome Adult Day Services, Northfield, IL]