EXTRAORDINARY PEOPLE: The ‘Gift’ of a Volunteer

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Volunteers are a lifeline to many organizations and businesses. Simply put, they fill a void and they do it for free, so it takes a special person to volunteer. In an environment like a hospital, it also takes a caring soul like Jill Weiss, our Extraordinary Person of the Week!

Some gifts in life you see. They are right there in front of you and they can be so very sweet. But then there are some gifts you feel.

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“I think one of our biggest jobs in the gift shop,” Jill Weiss said, “is to listen.” The gift shops at New Hanover Regional Medical Center are run by volunteers, like Weiss. She’s been a volunteer at the gift shops for four years now.

“It(gift shop) provides for people,” Weiss said, “especially for employees, patients, and families, a sort of break.”

A break. A simple thought but much deeper in this environment. Let’s be honest, the hospital can be an emotional and stressful time for all parties and it’s why volunteers like Weiss are so important.

“We’re the first face a lot of times,” Weiss said, “people will see when they come into the hospital, because you have volunteers at the main desk, front door, (the drivers of)shuttles that go around.”

And the gift shop volunteers play a vital role in helping raise money for exceptional causes, too! “We provide funding for projects that otherwise,” Weiss said, “they aren’t in the hospital budget.”

But Weiss does admit that helping make strangers feel at home, kind of, has a side effect. “Those are the types of things that just make you feel good,” Weiss said.

That kind of thinking, Jill Weiss, is why you are extraordinary.

If you’d like to learn more about volunteering opportunities at NHMRC, click here.