Samaritan Honors Its Volunteer 'Family'

Samaritan Honors Its Volunteer 'Family'

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Samaritan Medical Center took time Thursday night to honor the people who volunteer their time.

"I always made money in my previous life," volunteer Dr. Bob Brown said. "When you volunteer you get some other kind of payment and it's an emotional payment -- and it really feels good." 

Brown is a retired physician who has been volunteering at Samaritan for more than 10 years. He's a patient advocate.  

"Well, we talk to patients," he said. "We want to make sure that people know they aren't a disease or they aren't a diagnosis or a number, but they are a person."

Brown is just one of the more than 90 volunteers who attended an appreciation dinner at Samaritan Summit Village Thursday.

"This is a way for us, even though we try to thank our volunteers every day, this is just one night that we can really recognize all their efforts for the year," said Jane Schmitt, who's the hospital's director of volunteer services. 

In 2018, 223 people spent more than 23,000 hours volunteering at Samaritan. 

Volunteers help out at the hospital and both nursing homes in more than 20 departments. Some volunteers are in their 80s while others are still in high school. 

Teen volunteer Joel Fox worked with Children's Miracle Network last summer. 

"It really helps the kids because they love it," Fox said, "and you're just doing a great thing."

"It's like a family," Brown said. "We have big treasure here in this hospital." 

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