Palliative & End-of-Life Care

Volunteers are an important part of the Palliative and End-of-Life Care (PEOLC) healthcare team. PEOLC focuses on meeting the needs of patients and families receiving palliative and end-of-life care.

What type of work does a PEOLC volunteer do?

PEOLC volunteers work with both adult and pediatric patients and their families in many settings, such as hospitals, hospices, and the home. What volunteers do depends on where the care is given and what’s needed. They may help patients with practical needs, such as helping around the house, companionship, family support, planning recreational activities, even helping plan and run special events.

Whether a volunteer caring for someone at the bedside, or involved with a palliative care organization, there's something for everyone.

Why choose to be a PEOLC volunteer?

Most volunteers will tell you it’s because they find it so rewarding. Eunice says, "I may be retired from work now, but I'm not retired from life." She chooses to volunteer because she’s willing and able to be with patients and families at a challenging time in their life journey.

The last good thing that may happen in a person’s life is a PEOLC volunteer.

Jim spends 1 morning each week in the office mailing out bereavement support materials and helping organize annual memorial services. Jim appreciates the continuing education he receives, as it helps him reach out to people, not just for his volunteer work but also in his everyday life.

Read about Mary, a volunteer who helped a family cope with a life-limiting illness.

What training does a PEOLC volunteer get?

PEOLC volunteers get the training and support they need to feel supported and competent to carry out their responsibilities. Volunteers are never asked to do anything they don’t feel ready or comfortable to do.

Provincially standardized Volunteer Resource training and facilitator manuals are available to help train new volunteers and/or be available to enhance existing volunteer programs. For a copy, contact palliative.care@ahs.ca

How do I become a PEOLC volunteer?

To volunteer with AHS visit the Provincial Volunteer Resources webpage for a list of volunteer opportunities in your area and how to apply. Hospices recruit volunteers separately, a list of hospices in each zone is available on the Finding Services webpage.

E-mail palliative.care@ahs.ca if you have any questions.  We answer emails from Monday to Friday, except on statutory holidays. We’ll do our best to get back to you within 2 business days.

DO NOT send any personal or health information by email. Information sent by email isn’t secure.​