National Volunteering Week: Celebrating Our Volunteers

National Volunteering Week is an annual event dedicated to honouring and celebrating the invaluable contributions of volunteers across the country. This year, from May 20th to May 26th, we embrace the theme ‘Uniquely Us’, which underscores the importance of recognising and appreciating the diverse qualities and talents that each volunteer brings to Galway Hospice and Mayo Hospice.

Volunteering is more than just a service; it is a unique expression of care, compassion, and commitment. It is about individuals coming together to make a difference, each contributing in their own special way to create a stronger, more connected hospice community.  This week, we shine a light on the many ways volunteers enrich our lives and strengthen the fabric of our patients and families.

Celebrating Galway Hospice and Mayo Hospice Volunteers

At Galway Hospice and Mayo Hospice, our volunteers are the cornerstone of our mission to provide exceptional care and support to patients and their families. Their dedication and selflessness embody the spirit of National Volunteering Week, and we are incredibly proud to celebrate their contributions.

Galway Hospice 

The volunteers at Galway Hospice bring a wealth of diverse experiences and backgrounds, making our community richer and more vibrant. From providing companionship to patients, assisting Daycare and In Patient Unit to support patients and families, to offering reception, driving and administrative support, each volunteer’s unique talents and skills are invaluable. Their unwavering commitment and compassion ensure that our patients receive the highest level of care and support during challenging times.

“We are like a happy family of volunteers with superb training.”

Volunteer Marlis Grofelnik shares her experience

“I believe it is human nature to help one another, to the one we love, to the one we know, to the one we don’t know…

I volunteer simply because I can and I care, all the people are my tribe.

Volunteering gives me a purpose bigger than myself; it makes me feel good about myself.

Last but not least I get to know beautiful human beings, we can always have great conversations and fun. Some of them have become my close friends for life.”

– Marlis Grofelnik


Mayo Hospice Volunteers

Similarly, the volunteers at Mayo Hospice are an integral part of our team, providing essential services that enhance the quality of life for our patients. Whether it’s through supporting the Day care, Driving or assisting in reception, and administration duties, or helping with other day-to-day tasks, their contributions are diverse and deeply appreciated.

Volunteer Susanna Kenny shares her experience

“I applied to be a volunteer with Mayo Hospice after having a tour and introduction to the beautiful new building of Mayo Hospice in March 2021.

I had often played pitch and putt with my family on these grounds before the Hospice was built.  My abiding memory of such a game was with my sister Jean’s three children.  My sister was recovering from cancer of the tongue, throat, and tonsils at the time.  She was so ill and so weak at the time.  She just sat on a seat as we did the rounds of the course.

I must say that at that time we just tried to make the most of our time together and did not know what the future held for Jean or her lovely young family.

Thankfully Jean made a full recovery and has enjoyed many years of good health and the happiness of seeing her children grow up, get married and she is now the proud Granny of 4 beautiful grandchildren and hopefully more to come.

Back in 2021 I was self-employed at the time and hoping to retire.  I was a bit concerned that I would be bored with the new retired life, so I had to get a plan for Susanna.

I am delighted that my application was accepted, and I now volunteer in Mayo Hospice    I cover reception and give the full-time staff a lunch and tea break on a rostered basis.

We are like a happy family of volunteers with superb training.

As volunteers we have regular “get togethers” organised with food, drink, and an opportunity to catch up and get to know everyone.

I am enjoying my time with Hospice in its beautiful surroundings.

I am not involved in the care of patients, but I am on the receiving end of how happy everyone is with the courtesy shown to them and how happy they are with the care provided their loved ones.”

– Susanna Kenny


Join Us in Celebrating!

To our Galway and Mayo Hospice volunteers: Your dedication, compassion, and unique contributions are what make our Hospice truly special. We are deeply grateful for all that you do. This week, and every week, we celebrate you and the extraordinary impact you have on the lives of our patients and their families.

Let’s come together to honour and appreciate the unique gifts each volunteer brings to our community.

Happy National Volunteering Week!

With heartfelt thanks,

The Galway Hospice and Mayo Hospice Team

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