Volunteers of NSHA: Meet Jim Swetland of Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre’s hospitality program

NSHA volunteer Jim Swetland serves as information desk host at Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre (Contributed).
NSHA volunteer Jim Swetland serves as information desk host at Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre (Contributed).

The first thing Jim Swetland did when he retired in 2017 was buy a house and move from Montreal, Que. to Amherst, N.S. The second thing he did was contact Volunteer Services at the Cumberland Regional Health Care Centre (CRHCC).

Swetland and his late wife had been stationed in Halifax previously for three years and they loved Nova Scotia so much that they had planned to make it their retirement home.

Sadly, his wife died of lung cancer in 2015. Swetland was so grateful and impressed with the care she had received from her palliative care team, and her whole health care support system, that he decided he wanted to find a way to return the kindness and care they had received as a couple, once he had retired from his day job.

These days, Swetland can be found playing softball every Monday and Wednesday, but Thursday mornings are reserved for his volunteer role as information desk host at CRHCC, where he greets visitors and clients and helps them find their way through the facility.

It means a lot to Swetland that he is able to support and reassure people that sometimes arrive at the facility feeling overwhelmed, because he remembers those feelings all too well.

Swetland goes home at noon every Thursday morning feeling fulfilled and happy. He loves giving back to his new community through his volunteer position.

He tells prospective volunteers that, “we might not all be able to make monetary donations, but it means as much, and we can get so much satisfaction by donating our time as a volunteer.”

Want to learn more about how you can volunteer with Nova Scotia Health Authority? No matter where in the province you live, there are plenty of ways to get involved!

Please visit http://www.nshealth.ca/get-involved/about-volunteering-nsha to learn how.