Hospice Looking for Volunteers

Hospice House

The North Okanagan Hospice Society is starting an in-home volunteer program called ‘Nav-CARE’. 

The society saya after a successful research project with UBC-Okanagan and the Interior Health Authority over the past three years, the North Okanagan Hospice Society is officially launching its own Nav-CARE volunteer program this fall.

The Nav-CARE program improves the quality of life of older adults so they can stay in their homes for as long as possible. Nav-CARE uses specially trained volunteers to conduct regular visits in the home with older adults who are living with a serious illness that is affecting their quality of life. These volunteers are trained in assessing quality of life, advocating for clients and families, facilitating connections to community, supporting access to resources, and promoting active engagement. 

“Our compassionate Nav-CARE volunteers aspire to reach out and make a difference in the lives of seniors. In doing so, volunteers make the North Okanagan a better place to live and age,” says Ruth Edwards, Executive Director of NOHS. “Nav-CARE will help create a ‘compassionate community’ in the North Okanagan, where people care for each other, make each other happier, connected and help find meaning in life.” 

Often older adults become increasingly isolated at home, as they experience transitions and loss, but it is only friends and family who know of their need. The focus of the program is supporting those with a serious illness and have quality of life concerns such as loneliness or social isolation, recent losses, mobility challenges, coping with transitions, difficulty finding resources within the community, and a perceived need for the program. 

“North Okanagan Hospice Society has strong roots in our community. It is a pleasure to be involved with a program that gives back to our citizens who are still at home. This truly fulfils our mission statement of quality end-of-life care for all in the North Okanagan. Being able to support our elders in this way brings respect, care and dignity,” shares Clara Dyck, RN, MSN, Education and Resource Leader at NOHS. “We are pleased to invite public and professional community members to refer older adults living at home with a serious illness to the program.”