Passages Hospice and Association for Individual Development Promote Volunteerism

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Christine Stepleton has a few simple goals in life: to have a reliable job, to support herself and live independently, and to make a difference in the world. To help her reach her goals, Christine became a member of the Association for Individual Development (AID) in Aurora.

Christine Stepleton has a few simple goals in life: to have a reliable job, to support herself and live independently, and to make a difference in the world. To help her reach her goals, Christine became a member of the Association for Individual Development (AID) in Aurora.

AID seeks to “empower individuals with disabilities, mental illness and special needs to achieve independence and community inclusion.” AID serves parts of Kane, Kendall, DeKalb, DuPage, Cook and Will Counties, providing behavior health, crisis intervention, children’s and community integration services. Job-seeking members of AID are connected with a Job Developer who helps them build a resume, contact possible employers and practice interview skills. AID Job Developer Kathy Kusek thought volunteer work might allow Christine to get her foot in the door in a time when jobs are hard to come by.

Christine began volunteering with Passages Hospice. The Passages volunteer program trains and places volunteers across the state, with many in the AID service area. Passages volunteers can serve as in-home volunteers helping patients and family members with housekeeping errands, or simply providing companionship. Volunteers in skilled nursing facilities may help serve meals, assist staff with their duties or simply develop friendships with patients. Administrative volunteers can assist in an office setting helping organize documents and answer phones. Bereavement volunteers provide ongoing support to family members after the loss of a loved one through calls, visits or assistance in daily activities.

In the six months that Christine has been volunteering with Passages Hospice, she has served more than 200 hours at Countryside Care Center. Countryside Activity Director Pat Marn says Christine is “dependable and good-natured” and very much appreciated. Job Developer Kathy Kusek is grateful for the increased confidence that volunteering gives Christine, along with the important job skills she’s learning.

Passages Hospice was so satisfied with Christine’s volunteer work that she was awarded the Passages Hospice Volunteer of the Month award in January, and was nominated for an Impact Volunteer Award through the Volunteer Center of Northwest Suburban Chicago. Passages Hospice is dedicated to enhancing quality of life for their patients, and is pleased to have the opportunity to work with an organization like AID, which is committed to improving the lives of their clients.

For more information or to become a Passages Hospice volunteer, see http://www.passageshospice.com. For more information about the Association for Individual Development, see http://www.the-association.org.

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Charlene Sligting
Passages Hospice
630-659-5001
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