Volunteers Play Vital Role in Hospital Experience
Bob and Norma Clearly arrive at Bailey Medical Center each Tuesday morning and start their jobs as volunteers for the hospital. Norma helps the staff in Administration with dating and organizing the mail and assists Human Resources with various projects. “It is mostly work that anybody can do, but it is time-consuming and it helps them do more work that is technical to their area,” says the retired pharmacist. “I feel that I’m really helping them.”
Norma is the longest-serving volunteer at Bailey. When she first inquired about volunteering at the newly constructed hospital in her hometown of Owasso, an official volunteer program was not yet established. “They took my number and then called me one day.” Happy to return to a hospital environment now as a volunteer, Norma says she was especially impressed by the people she met. “I think they must have to pass a test for niceness, because they are so friendly and make you feel welcome. They treat you like you’re one of them.”
“When I started volunteering,” Bob recalls, “I’d drive the golf cart. For a while, no one wanted to ride, because they were afraid they’d have to give a tip, you know.” Bob laughs, while Norma reminds him that the children were always happy to hop on for a ride around the campus. Seeing Bob had a little too much time on his hands, Norma recruited him to help her with another project – watering the plants. “The first time we went around, I counted,” says Norma. “There were 33 plants.”
It takes an hour and a half for the couple to cover all three floors of the hospital caring for the plants. When asked if they work well together, Norma replies, “Oh, I don’t know. We’ve lived together a long time, (she laughs.) We do have different ideas on how to do it.” Married for 61 years, with four children, ten grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren, Bob and Norma have figured out when it comes to their different ideas that sometimes compromise means not having to compromise at all. “We each have our own plants. He does certain ones and I do the others.”
Bob and Norma, along with all the volunteers, are part of what makes Bailey Medical Center a welcoming environment for patients, visitors and staff. It is found in the little things – the details – like having green, healthy plants throughout the hospital. The next time you are strolling through the hospital, take a look at the plants and think of Bob and Norma and the volunteers who come to the hospital each day and give of their time, talents and care.
For more information about volunteering at Bailey Medical Center please contact Cheryl West at 918-376-8522 or email@example.com.