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Friendly Faces at Burnaby Hospital’s Volunteer Wayfinder

Friendly Faces at Burnaby Hospital’s Volunteer Wayfinder

November 11, 2009

Shown left: Kehar Singh Aujla stands confidently at Burnaby Hospital’s Volunteer Wayfinder, greeting and helping patients and visitors alike.

Kehar Singh Aujla is one of 375 active hospital volunteers who contribute 40,000 hours a year to Burnaby Hospital, supporting patients and families with guidance and comfort. When I interviewed Kehar, I found him standing proudly at the Volunteer Wayfinder, where he presents a friendly face and assists patients and visitors coming to the hospital.

I asked him just how many volunteer hours he’s put in at Burnaby Hospital, and he points to a pin on his Burnaby Hospital shirt. When I look closer to the pin, he smiles widely and tells me he received it last year for contributing 500 volunteer hours. He says he’s looking forward to reaching 1,000 hours by the end of this year or early 2010, and explains his passion for volunteering keeps him busy and active in the community.

Currently in his fourth year at Burnaby Hospital, Kehar finds great reward in what he provides. “When we find people,” he begins, “they are really satisfied with our service. They find this is a unique service, which they are not getting at every hospital. So, when the people are satisfied with our service, we feel satisfied.”

Kehar is also a member of the volunteer Spiritual Care program. Through this program, he visits Punjabi-speaking patients to inquire about their health and helps comfort them during their hospital stay. “When I go to them, they feel very much [at ease], and that gives me satisfaction.”

Because of the high level of hospitality offered at Burnaby Hospital, Kehar says, “People already come and say that this hospital is entirely different than that of other hospitals”.