RSVP volunteers adopt client

Published 10:16 pm Monday, December 29, 2008

By Staff
It all started with a phone call from Amedysis Home Health of Brewton.
Marion Collins, RSVP Volunteer Coordinator, spoke with the social worker from Amedysis.
The social worker had an elderly client named Mary Waters who lived in Flomaton, had bladder cancer, and was scheduled to receive radiation treatments five days a week for approximately seven weeks at the Brewton Cancer Center.
Ms. Waters needed transportation to the treatments and did not have any available through family or acquaintances.
Collins spoke with the cancer treatment center to discuss the details of scheduled treatments before she looked for volunteers to transport Ms. Waters.
Through this discussion, it was arranged that the client would be taken as soon as the volunteer arrived with the client and the volunteer would not have to wait long for the treatments to be completed.
Marion found two RSVP transportation volunteers, Edabell Tessier and Betty Queen who agreed to alternate days transporting the client for the next seven weeks.
RSVP volunteers use their own vehicles and receive a very small mileage reimbursement and supplemental liability and accident insurance when transporting elderly and/or disabled persons to medical appointments and the pharmacy.
The two RSVP transportation volunteers completed 37 round trips to the cancer center and numerous other trips to medical appointments for the client.
After the client finished treatments in Brewton and medical appointments in Pensacola, she had to have several small surgeries that required more trips to Pensacola.
The two transportation volunteers never hesitated when the client needed transportation to Pensacola.
Since the client did not have anyone to help after the surgeries, the two volunteers adopted the client.
They would take meals to her, go shopping for her, and one volunteer even spent the night with her after one of the surgeries.
When the client needed to move out of her trailer in Flomaton and into a senior apartment complex in Brewton, Tessier helped her pack and move into her new apartment.
Waters said her experience with RSVP volunteers has been positive; everyone is so friendly and helpful.
Anyone interested in volunteering may call Amy Cooley, RSVP Director, or Marion Collins, at 251-897-0256 or 251-368-8626 ext 112.