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'Heart' at work

Volunteers Heart at Work

In honor of National Volunteer Week, April 12-18, Mayo Clinic Health System is proud to recognize its 920 volunteers across northwest Wisconsin who collectively have volunteered 87,029 hours in 2014.

In Osseo, a group of retired employees has shifted its focus to volunteering for the clinic and nursing home.

“I look forward to it,” says Elva Sell. “I feel like assisting them is making a difference, and they appreciate it.”

“It’s also good for us to get out,” says Maxine Steen. “It’s helpful for us because we get to socialize and see our old colleagues and friends.”

Although they worked in different departments, these eight retired Osseo women have remained friends and continue to give back to the community.

“This is home to so many residents and patients,” Sell says. “It’s up to us to get the work done, give them support and make it a comfortable place for them.”

According to The Independent Sector, a consortium of charities, foundations and corporate giving programs, the value of volunteer services is around $22.55 an hour, making the contributions of the 920 volunteers worth $1.9 million.

The Osseo volunteers agree that volunteering is valuable.

“Volunteering is an important function of society,” says Judy Solberg. “It helps fill gaps in services and brings the community to patients and residents that don’t have that connection anymore.”

Vicky Zehms, volunteer services director for Mayo Clinic Health System in northwest Wisconsin, thanked the organization’s “dedicated volunteers for their service to our patients, residents and our staff.”

“We are very fortunate to have such a great group of caring volunteers,” Zehms says.

All Mayo Clinic Health System volunteers receive orientation and training on their specific service area. Anyone age 14 and older is welcome to volunteer. Some roles require a lot of walking or physical movement while others do not. Volunteers are needed in:

  • Barron (715-537-6766): Medical/Surgical, gift shop, information desk/escort service, breakfast cashier, assisted living stretching leaders and nursing home activities.
  • Bloomer (715-568-6812): Therapy greeters and nursing home activities.
  • Chippewa Falls (715-568-6812): Clinic greeter.
  • Eau Claire (715-838-3262): Gift shop, Emergency Department, Critical Care Unit, information desks, transporters, greeters and pet therapy.
  • Menomonie (715-233-7314): Gift shop and patient escort.
  • Osseo (715-597-8772): Clinic greeters and nursing home activities.
  • Rice Lake (715-537-6766): Information desk and procedure area.
  • Hospice (715-464-5265): Patient and family support, bereavement support, clerical support and fundraising projects.
  • To apply online, visit

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