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Letters to the editor

April 28, 1997

Dedicated people serve Hospice

To the editor:

April 13-19 was National Volunteer Week, and I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank the people I believe are some of the most dedicated volunteers in our community, the volunteers of Hospice of the Panhandle.

Most people know that hospice provides a very special kind of care for terminally ill persons and their families, but it's less known that if it were not for volunteers, our hospice could not function. Even the federal government recognizes the importance of volunteers in the delivery of hospice care by requiring that Medicare-approved hospices utilize volunteers from their community.

Hospice care is provided through an interdisciplinary, medically directed team. While our hospice team includes a paid staff of nurses, social workers and hospice aides, we also rely on volunteers to provide assistance in three areas: patient care, bereavement and organizational support. Annually our 140 volunteers give over 4,000 hours of their time.


Our patient care and bereavement volunteers begin their work only after completing a 25-hour training program and with close supervision and support. Many have found great joy in discovering they have a gift they can share. Often the most important thing that they can do is to just "be there" for patients and their families, to reassure them that they are not alone, to hold a hand, to offer a smile, or to just listen. The personal rewards are enormous. Volunteers usually feel they gain more than they have been able to give.

Our organizational support volunteers help in the office, enter data into the computer, help with mailings, make Light Up a Life possible, bake, transport staff, and represent Hospice of the Panhandle at various events throughout the year.

Our hospice is growing as more and more persons seek our help. For this reason, we have a constant need for new volunteers. If you would like to learn more about hospice volunteering, I invite you to call me at 1-304-264-0406.

Pam Shanklin

Volunteer Coordinator

Hospice of the Panhandle

List of thanks

To the editor:

I read your newspaper daily. I am a subscriber. I am also an inmate at M.C.T.C. and a member of the Catholic Parish Review Team for the past 25 months. Since I arrived here a large group of volunteers who contribute their spare time to our Catholic services and various religious groups have helped each member of my church overcome difficult times we have all had at some point during our incarceration.

Yet there seems to be no ready way to express how very much each one of us appreciates the time these volunteers take to help make a difference for us.

I thought it would be nice if we could let them and everyone know our true feelings on this by asking your newspaper to print an article for us on behalf of the M.C.T.C. Catholic Community.

The following volunteers are who we would like to express our appreciation to:

The Rev. Charles Flood, Baltimore, Md.

The Rev. Vincent Gluc, Ellicott City, Md.

Eucharistic minister, Maria Nowakowski.

Deacon, Skip Manley, St. John's, Frederick, Md.

Seminarian, Raymond Jansen, Mount Saint Mary's Seminary.

Seminarian, Gregory Simier, Mount Saint Mary's Seminary.

Religious tutor, Regina Haerer, Hagerstown.

Big Brother "mentor" Bill Harrigan, St. John's Frederick.

Spanish study, Antonio Ramirez, St. John's Frederick.

Choir teacher, Julia Garrott.

Special programs participant, Gregory Hannigan, Hagerstown.

Special programs participant, Irene Volening.

And a very special thanks to Sister Deloris, M.C.T.C., M.C.I., R.C.I. Catholic chaplain.

Mike Osborne

M.C.T.C. Parish Review

No. 250229

Ruling from home

To the editor:

The article on home rule in the April 9 issue was informative, but it missed the boat. Home rule is not about individual politicians, but about control and at what level to best place the authority of government. Who governs is always in the hands of the electorate.

If you don't like the way any or all of the County Commissioners represent your interests you should mount a campaign to oust them and elect people of your choice.

Home rule puts control of government closer to home and allows more citizen involvement in formulating and enacting laws, codes, etc. The more populated the city/county the more home rule applies. Instead of allowing the delegation to push things down your throat, you will be able to direct the actions of the delegates. Think about it. If the politicians are bad, get rid of them at the ballot box.

William Peck

Needmore, Pa.

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