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A young hospital volunteer stands in portrait with text on photo
July 24, 2018

Introducing… a hospital volunteer

Johnathan Black is a hospital volunteer at Hamilton Health Sciences’ (HHS) Hamilton General Hospital (HGH). He has been in this role for two and a half years and wants to pursue a career in health care.

What do you do?

I participate in HHS’ Guiding People Services program, which helps patients and visitors find their way around the hospital.

I also occasionally volunteer in the student ward service program, where we comfort patients who have been admitted. Soon, I’ll get more involved with the emergency department, which I’m excited about.

What do you love most about your role?

What I love the most about my position is I have the opportunity to help ease the anxiety patients and visitors experience when they enter an unfamiliar place. By the time I finish guiding them to where they need to go, most of that stress has been relieved.

What keeps you motivated?

I stay motivated by seeing people have someone they can look to for advice in navigating the hospital. To me, this is incredibly important because it takes one more thing away they may worry about. I believe this can drastically affect how they feel about coming back to the hospital in the future.

Why did you decide to volunteer at HHS?

For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to help people. As a child raised in the foster care system, I was always surrounded by workers in the public service and health care sectors. This experience had a big impact on my desire to help people.

When I started my volunteer position at HHS, I knew I wasn’t just doing it for my 40 hours requirement for high school. I knew I was furthering my interest in a career involved with helping others who need it the most.

How do you use social media in your role?

I use social media to occasionally share my experiences as a student and volunteer at HHS. I frequently use #myHHS in my posts to join the conversation with other staff members and doctors at all our hospitals.

You can find Johnathan on Instagram and Twitter.