Volunteer Testimonials

Duke Cancer Research 004

I think it was my daughter Joy who encouraged me to volunteer at Duke when I first retired from the telephone company back in 1999. She got all the information I needed to contact Diana Getzleman the head of volunteer services at the time. I did, and the rest is history.Joyce Martin (Gift Shop/Fundraising Volunteer)

When I was pregnant 46 years ago, the gift shop at Duke South was opening and most of my baby gifts came from there. I thought, this is a wonderful gift shop–such really nice merchandise and such nice people. Then sometime in the 90s the Environmental Services office suite was across from the auxiliary storage room at Duke North, and I got to know Betty Leach and other ladies because I let them use our copying machine before they got one. They were so extra-nice to me for a couple special birthdays, making sure I had balloons, candy, flowers, etc.Then EVS decided to give a rose to patients for various reasons and I got to know Linda Moss, who was super-special to work with, taking care of the payment and arrangements. But after 40 years of working at Duke I didn’t know what the auxiliary did, other than have gift shops and fundraisers. When I got ready to retire and started looking at ways I could volunteer I decided to do that in the gift shops because of those people I had met. Sometime after that I started having problems with my knee so it was suggested that I volunteer with the fundraising where I could sit, and from there to get on the board.

Now, ten plus years later, I’m still doing fundraising, helping the fundraiser manager in any way I can, and am on the board of directors and telling everyone who will listen to me just what the auxiliary does. I’m so very proud of the programs we have sponsored with the money we raise. I’m especially excited about all the programs we provide monies to for various causes with Pediatrics because I worked in that department my first 12 years at Duke and have always loved children.That is my big love.
In addition, I tremendously enjoy seeing my previous employees and they love seeing me as we share hugs. So it is a win-win situation all around. Plus all the staff of the Auxiliary and the board members are really fantastic and I’m proud to be able to call them all friends. –Linda Simpson (Fundraising Volunteer/Board Member)

A desire to help others who are experiencing illness and to help those who take care of people who are ill.
Thanks for the opportunity! –Jo Mauskopf (Gift Shop and Fundraising Volunteer)

I wanted to be a part of one of the most prestigious hospitals in the world and help give people a reason to want to be treated at Duke Hospitals by sharing my time with patients. Many of these patients, and relatives, just need a welcomed break from the pressures they face in just being in a hospital. And if I can bring some relief to them during their stay at Duke, then it is my duty as a fellow human being to do my part. It is a selfish good feeling to be able to help others who cannot help themselves. –Jimmy Poer (Book Cart Volunteer)

I volunteer for selfish reasons: I enjoy the fellowship with the Auxiliary staff and the volunteers. If y’all were not so nice, I would be elsewhere, and that is the truth. –Angelika Langen (Fundraising Volunteer)

When I was 48 I felt like my energy was slowing down. I just thought that keeping up with 4 kids had worn me out even though 3 of them were in college and only 1 left at home. I was still working (teaching) so I went to a heart doctor because I was having skipped heart beats.

After a few tests the doctor told me I had a large hole in my heart! So I was sent to a doctor at Duke who explained most babies are born with a hole but they usually close. Mine did not. He was amazed that none of my doctors had caught it because I was 48 years old! I had the surgery at Duke about 4 weeks later. He warned me that if an infant was born the day of my surgery he would have to do the infant before me. Luckily everything went fine. It was a hard recovery but after 6 weeks I was fine.
I had always wanted to give back and help children who were going through surgeries at Duke. I enjoy helping the children and giving the parents a chance to relax.

Thank you for the chance to help the children. –Joanne Wootton (Kidz Need Hugz Volunteer)

The main reason I volunteer is because I like to give back in some form whenever I can. That’s the main reason. I know volunteering in a gift shop isn’t glamorous, but the money raised does go to benefit the hospital. I also do Meals on Wheels to help home-bound people, I visit an assisted living establishment to try to cheer up some senior citizens, and I volunteer in the Heart Center Surgical ICU unit’s waiting room to assist family members who may otherwise be more stressed out. So, in a nutshell, it is to help others in some manner. –Patti Parker (Gift Shop Volunteer)

I volunteer for KNH for two reasons: to relieve suffering, and to keep my heart open to giving and receiving love. –Joie Spector (Kidz Need Hugz Volunteer/Trainer)

We volunteer because we like helping other people. It is very rewarding. It makes us feel good. We like to stay busy. We have a great opportunity to give back to the community our time and resources. We are the ones who get the blessings. It also gives us an opportunity to meet new people. We like helping those who are not as blessed as we are. –George Martin (Fundraising Volunteer/ Just a Buck Cart)

I am a Kidz Need Hugz volunteer because I love babies and feel this is a way I can make a difference in their little lives. These babies are very sick and, in some cases, alone. When I leave the fifth floor at Duke Hospital after spending time with these little ones, I feel very good about what I have done, as well as how I have spent my time. I feel that I helped the nurses and parents, but mainly the babies I was lucky enough to hold and cuddle. They are so helpless and I feel they need all the attention and TLC we can possibly give them in their fragile states. The nurses have such massive responsibilities with their medical needs, and there are not enough hours in their work days to spend “quality time” with these little people. That’s where the volunteers come in–giving back and making a difference for the sick babies who are struggling at the beginning of their lives! –Ginger Hawkins (Kidz Need Hugz Volunteer/Trainer and Board Member)