Everything You Need To Know About Volunteer Nursing!
Today, there is a great need for nurses all over the world. In the US, you can find nonprofit organizations that offer volunteer nursing services to help the less fortunate people. It doesn’t really matter where you spent your volunteer services. Whether you volunteered locally or abroad, you will surely reap immense rewards.
Before you can become a nurse, there are some things that you should know. The health care industry is in need of competent nurses. To become one, you have to look at nursing not as a profession that will allow you to earn decent income. Try to overlook the coworker and mutual politics so that you can become a volunteer.
As a volunteer, you will not get paid for your work. You will serve deprived and needy people. These individuals need your full support and concern, for they can’t pay for health services. Some nurses find fulfillment in helping fellow citizens without expecting anything in return. You don’t have to give up your professional just to become a volunteer nurse. In fact, you can work at a certain hospital and spend your free time serving others through the nonprofit organizations.
There are no limitations to become a volunteer. Regardless of the diploma or degree you’ve earned, you can become a volunteer. Knowing the duties and tasks of a nurse is enough to carry out the work of a volunteer. The only way to know the duties or tasks of nurses is to become a licensed practical nurse, licensed vocational nurse, registered nurse, and certified nursing assistant. In order to become an LPN or LVN (Licensed Vocational Nurse), you need to take up LPN classes and secure an LPN license. Online LPN programs are also widely available and all you have to do is find an accredited college or university offering such program. LVN training programs are also available Texas and California just in case you’re interested to become one.
You can also become a volunteer nurse if you finished a CNA Program. Once you’ve obtained your CNA licensure, you can start with your volunteer work. While you’re volunteering, you can also move from CNA to LPN. This is a great opportunity to work as an LPN, thereby allowing you to earn a more decent income while doing some volunteer services.
Many registered nurses are also finding fulfillment in volunteer work. After passing their RN exam and meeting the RN requirements, they can now become a registered nurse. As compared to the LPN and CNA, then RN salary is higher. You can work as a registered nurse and during your spare time, you can also do volunteer work.
What are the duties or assignments of volunteer nurses? Well, their duties are also similar to that of LPNs, CNAs, and RNs. Among these are the following:
- Doing office work
- Perform basic medicinal treatments
- Assist with sanitation of patients
- Feed or provide food to patients
- Perform direct care to patients
- Carry out observation tasks
- Perform technical functions
- Help in transfers, discharges, or admissions of patients
- Do secretarial or clerical tasks
You can find volunteer nurses in large and small hospitals. The patients are mostly uninsured and poor, so you have to be extra patient and attentive to their needs. To qualify, you must meet with the requirements of the nonprofit organization or hospital. You should be aware that the requirements are unusual.
The common requirements for volunteer nursing are the following – a degree or certificate with current license, latest knowledge and experience in patient care, and preparation in supervising, teaching, or instruction. You can be at an advantage if you have experience in working with infectious ailments such as HIV or AIDS and TB; if you have executive experience; and if you have undergone a background check.
Even if you’re already acquired a license in the nursing profession, you will still need to undergo training. Throughout your nursing career, you will only register for such training one time. At times, some nurses are invited to take advantage of the opportunity to attend the training and become a volunteer. You can check out with Maryland Board of Nursing and the Visiting Nurse Service for more information about the volunteer nursing training.
Many nurses find volunteer work rewarding and in fact, most of them enjoy the relaxing feeling of being able to help others without expecting anything in return. You are able to provide others (who are weak and less fortunate) with comfort. With the additional training that you have to undergo, you are enhancing your aptitude and preparation in the medical field.
In some places, volunteer nurses receive free access to fitness centers, meal passes, parking, learning seminars, tax deduction, yearly vaccinations, and attend recognition parties or dinners. This is your chance to meet various kinds of people. You will not only be working with patients but you will also be mingling with volunteer executives. You will learn how to deal with them individually and properly.
You can find volunteer opportunities locally. Just inquire at local centers, hospitals, and doctor’s workplaces. During disasters and ruins, you can also apply as a volunteer and work with position groups. Intercontinental volunteering is also possible.
A Step by Step Guide to Become a Volunteer
If you decide to spend a considerable time as a volunteer, you can inquire at the US Peace Corps. Oftentimes, the volunteer work can last for 27 months but this will include housing, travel, and stipends. Aside from this organization, you can also check out Doctors without Borders since this organization provides medical care for natural disasters, armed conflict, health crises, and epidemics. The organization has around 27,000 volunteers from all over the world!
If you wish to stay in your local area or within the US, you can consult American Red Cross. You can undergo training there to become a blood bank volunteer or perhaps assist during disasters to provide relief to affected people.
Another organization that you can check for domestic opportunities is the . You can visit their official website so that you can be matched with the perfect volunteer work. You will simply provide the desired work and your targeted Zip code. In seconds, you will be provided with matches.
Project HOPE is another opportunity to work as a volunteer nurse. This is a hospital ship but you will need to be a registered nurse. The project was founded way back in 1958 and until today, it is still offering volunteer opportunities. Visit their website to gather information on how to file an application and the requirements to qualify.
If you are an RN, you can also join Operation Smile. You can file an application online and with this project, you will be assisting in surgical services for children to correct cleft lips or cleft palates in over 26 countries all over the world. The missions can be found online, so try to check out the website.
You can post your resume at Nurse Job Shop so that organizations can contact you when volunteer services are needed.
These are the best sources of volunteer nursing opportunities. If you are determined to become a volunteer, don’t hesitate to visit the official websites or visit the physical offices.
If you are not prepared to become a volunteer full time, you can work as an LPN/LVN, RN, or CNA and become a volunteer at the same time. Why don’t you visit a nursing home in your area? Working with the elderly can be very rewarding. You can cheer them up and who knows… you can also learn from them.
It would be impossible to become a nurse volunteer if you don’t have a license. As mentioned earlier, the requirements can be unusual and will depend on the organization where you filed an application.
What You Should Do
If you are determined to become a nurse volunteer, you have to become a licensed nurse first. The fastest way to become a nurse is through the certified nursing assistant program. This can take 1-2 years. However, if you want to earn a higher income, it would be best to finish a 4-year degree or the Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Another option would be to finish the associate’s degree. So you see, you have several options to choose from. Gaining experience in the related field is also very important if you want to become a volunteer. You'll also want to be sure you have the proper nursing attire. You're typically covered so long as you have several sets of clean nursing scrubs, though certain hospitals and clinics may have additional uniform requirements.
Earning a decent income won’t be able to give you much fulfillment. If you truly want to feel rewarded and fulfilled, become a nurse volunteer today. You can try doing it part time while you’re working so that you can get the feel. Most nurses who tried volunteer services every now and then enjoyed many benefits. This may also be the reason why some nurses don’t hesitate to do volunteer work for 6 months to 2 years!
Look for the volunteer opportunities today and contact the organizations mentioned earlier. Soon, you can serve as a volunteer nurse after you’ve finished the required training.