This is the hard part about my job

Found out today at work another of my clients is dying. He has cancer. He only found out last Monday. He’s been in hospital for a while now having tests. He’s almost 80 years old.

I felt very sad for him. He’s had no quality of life now for a while. He’s been really ill, and he’s had a few falls also. He’s been in and out of hospital for a good few months now.

My supervisor said she was taking him off of our service. She said he’s too sick to talk. So I never got to say goodbye. That was hard. I wished I could have said a final goodbye to him.

I guess this is the hard part about my job. Things happen suddenly. Clients get ill and die. And there really is no closure.

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friendly call got nominated for an award!

I am at work, and I just found out this afternoon that friendly call was nominated for a national award, yippee. Its a huge thing. The national awards are huge. People from all over ireland will be there. Different organisations that work with the elderly. Our organisation is small, so its a huge achievement to have been nominated. The awards ceremony is in november. It takes place in dublin, on the 14th of november. My supervisor asked all of the volunteers if they wanted to go. She said that our hotel accomodation would be payed for. I said I was definitely interested in going. It will be a fantastic night. If we win it will be even better lol. But to be nominated at all was huge. We’re all thrilled. I’ll keep you all posted on how things progress and if we win I’ll let you all know. Fingers crossed for us guys!

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I got nominated for volunteer of the year!

so I found out yesterday that my supervisor nominated me for volunteer of the year. Our local volunteer centre holds a competition each year and crowns the volunteer of the year and the organisation that they volunteer for gets recognition and I think they also get some money and then the person who wins gets a trophy and a certificate and there is a day out at a posh hotel and food and all that sorta thing.
I would so love to win! But just being nominated is awesome too! Just the fact that she thinks I am worthy of the volunteer of the year is huge to me!
I will keep you all posted! I am not sure when the competition is over and when the winner will be announced but I think its going to be soon!
fingers crossed but even if I dont win I am so thankful to just be nominated!

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Paying me compliments

I went back to work today after a few days off. I had been off last friday, and then again on tuesday.
I got my list of clients to call, and the very first lady I called, said something very beautiful to me.
I said hi to her, and asked her how she was.
she said she was ok, and then she said, are you? I reassured her that I was.
Then she said, I thought you’d quit working for friendly call!
I missed you when you werent here last week and I thought you might have given up your job!
As if! I didnt say that to her though.
I just thanked her for the kind compliment that she’d missed me.
Its so nice to know people think of me when I am not there.
She was one of two clients today who said they thought of me last week, as I usually call them on fridays.
What a nice feeling to be thought of! I must be making a difference in their lives, and for that, I am so grateful!
I was delighted to be back at work! I missed not being there!

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Work today was hectic!

work today was good, but very taxing. a client kept phoning the office, over and over.
We had called her, and one of the other volunteers, spend a whole hour on the phone with her. She’s a very needy client. She has complex mental health issues, and thats fine, I mean there is nothing wrong in that, but none of the volunteers are really trained to deal with that sort of thing.
I’m doing my mental health in the community course, so I will be trained in dealing with complex mental health stuff soon, but for now I am winging it.
We had to tell her that we needed to make a lot of other calls, so we couldnt spend a lot of time talking to her after the initial call, which had lasted for an hour.
We felt so bad for her. But she had her daughter coming over. We decided to call her daughter to make sure she was definitely going to visit her, since she’d been quite upset on the phone.
Then I had to call another clients sister, she is the clients contact person to call in an emergency. I had tried to get through to the client, but she wasnt answering her landline or cell phone at all. That is very unusual for her not to answer. Normally she’s always in and she always answers our calls.
I got through to her sister, who said she’d contact the clients son, to make sure she’s ok, my worry was she might have fallen, or be ill, and unable to call someone to let them know. She lives alone, and she is elderly.
I really am hoping she’s ok.
Some days work is really busy. And some days, like today, sometimes its very hectic and it depletes me of energy. I was glad to get home, I am going to relax for the rest of the day now. We have an outing next week, on thursday, we’ll be taking the clients out for afternoon tea. I dont know yet if I am definitely going, but I will if I am able and dont have anything else to do.

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work!

work today was busy. I had a good shift but some of my clients were not feeling ok. two of them were really depressed. it was hard to hear them so depressed. one of them is 92, and she’s going downhill fast. she said today her shoulders and arms are hurting a lot. she did also say to me that she was happy to hear my voice, and that she needed the chat. I was glad to be able to chat to her and keep her company for a little while. another client is 87 and he has pneumonia at the moment. the doctor wanted to send him to hospital but he refused to go in. he was not feeling too good today either. the rest of the clients were all ok, and doing well. my supervisor forgot about me today, she was meant to pick me up at 1:30, but she got sidetracked and totally forgot, until she remembered that she was short staffed and it was only then she realised that she’d been meant to come pick me up. it all worked out though, she did pick me up eventually. she told me she’s organising two events, for the clients in august. that will be nice. and it gives me a chance to meet some of the clients. i enjoy meeting them, putting a person to the voice, i think they enjoy meeting me too. My supervisor did two interviews today for local radio, she talked about the friendly call service and how people can get referred to it, and about loneliness and isolation amongst the elderly and vulnerable.

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