Michigan Healthcare Volunteer Resource Professionals
January 2015

In This Issue
Save the Date
Spring Conference will be May 13-15 at the Holiday Inn Resort West Bay Beach, Traverse City.
2014-2015 MHVRP Board
Rachel Jonaitis

Sarah Knochel


Linda Smith

Brian Pegouske

Karen VanCura

Donna Martorano
Education Chair

Kim Francis
Education Co-chair 
Kristyn Ireland
Membership Chair

Nancy Carlisi
Professional Development Chair
Shelly Weaver
Newsletter Chair

Lisa Hasselbach
Bylaws Chair

Steffanie Townshend
Community Resources Chair

Quick Links

We make a living by what we get.
We make a life by what we give.
                  - Winston Churchill
From the President

Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season with family and friends. Now it is time to look forward to the coming year and challenge ourselves to tackle the tasks on that long "wish list" that we keep in our office. Currently I am challenging myself to focus on getting VSysOne implemented into our system, of course along with updating all policies and implementing new volunteer roles. It is time to put action into the ideas and plans that we have wanted, but just don't have the time to focus on. Take an hour each week to work on your "wish list."


We have an exciting year ahead for MHVRP. I am looking forward to the Spring Conference in Traverse City. Not only will we have a beautiful location surrounded by amazing friends, but our speaker, Kaitee Doll-Bell, is going to be fantastic. I had the pleasure of attending one of her sessions in the 2014 National Conference and a session in 2013!  


Some other exciting announcements that we shared at the Fall Education Day: We do have a Treasurer, Brian Pegouske, who is the Volunter Service Specialist at the Battle Creek VA Medical Center. Brian has served on the board in the past as Bylaws Chair. Thank you Brian!


Please make sure to take the time and fill out the membership survey by the end of January. This survey will help all of our members for bench-marking purposes. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at Rachel.Jonaitis@mercyhealth.com.


On a personal note, you may have noticed that my last name had changed to Jonaitis in July. My wedding was on July 12 of this past year, and my husband and I are excited to announce our first baby will be arriving at the beginning of June. Exciting year to come!!
On behalf of the MHVRP Board, I would like to welcome Amy Rogers from Spectrum Health Reed City Hospital.

MHVRP is always looking for new members. If you know someone who would benefit from joining MHVRP, please contact Kristyn at 

February Regional Meetings

Looking to share ideas? Trying to find out how others are handling issues? Wanting to connect with professionals in a similar role as yours? Attend one, or all of the Regional Meetings scheduled in February. Attendees are welcome to bring other professionals or people from your community. Simply RSVP at least one week prior to the noted date.  


Tuesday, February 10, 2015 - 11:30 - 1:30 p.m.

Borgess Medical Center

1521 Gull Road

Kalamazoo, MI  49048

Hosted by:  Julie Luginbill

RSVP to 269-226-7012 or Julie.Luginbill@borgess.com


Tuesday, February 17, 2015 - 11:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Mercy Hospital

400 Hobart Street

Cadillac, MI  49601

Hosted by:  Kim Benz

RSVP to 231-876-7149 or kbenz3@mhc.net


Friday, February 27, 2015 - 11:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Beaumont Hospital

3601 W. 13 Mile Rd.

Royal Oak, MI  48073

Hosted by:  Nancy Carlisi

RSVP to 248-898-0849 or nancy.carlisi@beaumont.edu

Serving on the MHVRP Board

It is not too early to start thinking about serving MHVRP as an officer on the (2014-2015) Board.  Below is an overview of each role.  After the first of the year, I will mail out the official nominating form.  Please consider now how you can contribute to our dynamic organization by being a leader.  It is a wonderful opportunity to network with other board members and build your professional resume.


The deadline for all nominations is Friday, March 20. Email your recommendations to Linda Smith, Advisor, at lsmith26@hfhs.org.  




President-Elect (1 Open Position)

Serves as the President's "right hand."

Assumes all duties and responsibilities of the President in the absence or incapacity of the President.

Succeeds the office of President at the expiration of the President's elected term.

Term:  One year as President-Elect, followed by a one year term as President and a one year term as Advisor/Chair of Nominations Committee.


Treasurer (1 Open Position)

Receives all funds and deposits them into the MHVRP bank account.

Pays all bills as authorized by the budget.

Maintains a detailed accounting of receipts and expenditures.

Prepares annual budget.

Prepares and files proper paperwork with the IRS.

Term: one year.


Secretary (1 Open Position)

Takes attendance and records official minutes of all meetings.

Prepares and distribute minutes for board and general membership meetings at least three weeks prior to the meetings.

Archives files and minutes from meetings in on-line designated space on website.

Term: one year.


Nominating Committee (3 Open Positions)

Works with the Advisor to manage the annual election process.

Seeks and nominates members of MHVRP for office.

Prepares election slate in accordance with bylaws.

Announces results of the annual election.

Term: one year.


Advocacy Day 2015 
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
Send in your reservations today! MHA has arranged for Colleen Sweeney, R.N., B.S, as the speaker. Many of you will remember Colleen from our 2012 Spring Conference at the Homestead. Colleen has over 30 years of healthcare experience and is on a mission to change minds, change behaviors, and change outcomes!

Healthcare Advocacy Day is open to all hospital volunteers, chief executive officers, senior leaders and governing board members. Attendees will  learn about public policy in Lansing and Washington, DC, that affects hospitals in Michigan. Advocacy Day also provides the opportunity for attendees to meet with state legislators.

Those interested in attending, click here for the registration form. Early Bird Registration (before Feb. 13) is $25, registration after Feb. 13 will be a $35.
Would You Benefit from "Coffee Breaks" with Your Volunteers?
If you are looking for an quick, easy way to connect with your volunteers, hear what Lisa Hasselbach at Hurley Medical Center has been doing with "Coffee Breaks."

"Coffee Breaks" are annually scheduled meetings with all volunteers. Those who attend will join the Hospital Manager or Director of a specific service area, along with the Auxiliary Board President, Service Chair and Director of Volunteer Services.


This is a very informal meeting with coffee and donuts and a simple agenda that look like this:

  • Review the volunteer service area job description 
  • Discuss how everything is going
  • Discuss how the volunteers are doing
  • Ask whether there are any outstanding issues needing to be addressed

Lisa has found by hosting "Coffee Break" meetings she has built a rapport between hospital staff and service chairpersons, as well as provided the opportunity to address any issues that might otherwise not be communicated to staff or her.


At last year's "Coffee Breaks," Lisa found the phone system in the Surgical Lounge was not as efficient as what was needed. She added de-escalation techniques to the volunteer training and job descriptions, changed how patient mail is delivered, added a white board in the ER Waiting Room so the volunteer on duty can write their name on it so staff knows someone is on duty, and Lisa was also able to provide additional duties for the NICU greeters.


These meetings also provide hospital managers/directors the opportunity to say thank you to the volunteers and boast about what wonderful service volunteers provide in their area.

Have Something You Would Like to Share?
Members, if you have a volunteer program or topic that you would like me to share with the group as a feature in the newsletter, please do not hesitate to contact me. We all know how difficult it is to be out of the office to attend conferences and educational days. This will give us an opportunity to network and update each other on what's new or working well in our facilities. 


Shelly Weaver,
Newsletter Chair