Project Description

NO ONE DIES ALONE

At a large medical centre in the Northwest USA, while making her rounds, a veteran nurse checks on a frail, elderly man who is near death.  “Will you stay with me?” the man asks, his voice barely audible.  “Of course,” she says, meaning it. “As soon as I check on my other patients.”

On her return he had passed away.

She consoles herself with the knowledge that he was very old and obviously failing, that there were orders to not resuscitate him, that even if she had returned more quickly she could have done nothing.  Still, she is troubled.  She feels that she has failed, not just as a nurse but as a human being.  It was okay for him to die, she thinks—it was his time—but it was not okay for him to die alone.

No One Dies Alone is a volunteer programme was born out of this experience it provides the reassuring presence of a volunteer companion for a resident who may otherwise be alone,  so that they have the gift of human presence in their final days.

No one is born alone, and no one should die alone.

Vision
Mercy Parklands is dedicated to providing caring, bedside companionship for dying residents who are alone at the end of life.

No One Dies Alone is also for residents whose family members are in need of some respite or support.  This presence is provided by specially trained volunteers called “Compassionate Companions”

Role of the Volunteer
This programme does not involve nursing experience or nursing skills.  However, the programme requires a special volunteer to be with a resident who has no one with them at the end of life.

Warmth, empathy and the sincere desire to be a presence for dying residents who are without family or friends are among the character traits you must possess.

No One Dies Alone volunteers may be employees of Mercy Parklands or volunteers from our Mercy Parklands community.

For further information please contact Jonah Tejano, Clinical Manager – jtejano@mercyparklands.org.nz