Making a difference one cookie at a time From Spotlight on Health - Winter 2012
The mouth-watering aroma of freshly baked cookies fills the St. Cloud Hospital oncology hallway as volunteers Carole Lysher and Linda Kmitch deliver oatmeal raisin or chocolate chip cookies, still warm from the oven, to patient rooms.
Carole is no stranger to the oncology unit; she spent six months at St. Cloud Hospital when her husband was diagnosed with leukemia in 2006.
“All of the nursing staff went out of their way to make me feel comfortable during the unpredictable time with my husband -- volunteering was a way I could give back,” Carole said.
Carole volunteers four hours every week and has served more than 650 hours since starting in 2007.
Linda Kmitch and Carole Lysher enjoy baking and delivering fresh-baked oatmeal raisin cookies to oncology patients
at St. Cloud Hospital.
“When you volunteer, you feel as though you are doing something small by bringing cookies and coffee, but you really provide 15 minutes of a normal day during an uncertain time,” Carole said.
Linda, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in November 2009 and received chemotherapy at the Coborn Cancer Center, now comforts others. In November 2010, Linda was diagnosed as cancer free. Because she is so grateful for all of the volunteers who supported her, she also decided to volunteer. Linda has served more than 175 hours in the past year.
“Cookies just get me through the door. I talk with patients and their family to see if there is anything I can do to make their stay more comfortable,” Linda said. “I gain more as a volunteer than I would have ever expected.”
For information on how you can volunteer and make a difference, contact the Volunteer Office at (320) 255-5638.
Learn more about Volunteer Services and opportunities available