Inspiring Volunteers Give the Gift of Time

If we profiled one of our volunteers every day for a year, we would not begin to cover all their remarkable stories. The volunteers of Kansas City Hospice & Palliative Care run the gamut of service to their community.

Kansas City Hospice HouseSome are involved in patient care, others help at the office, many help at events. And, still others bring their special gifts to us. They bring service pets and play music for patients. Some bake for families at our two hospice houses, run errands, staff our resale boutique. The list goes on and on.

They may spend a few hours each year, or show up every single day. Volunteers are young and old and they cross every social spectrum. 

Volunteers serve as patient companions, grief support facilitators, hairdressers, massage therapists and pet therapists. they might be resale boutique merchandisers, floral designers, gardeners, musicians or bakers. And, we have videographers, dog walkers, litter box changers, administrative assistants, couriers, camp cabin buddies, and so much more.


The programs and services we provide would not be possible without the willingness, compassion, creativity, dedication and support of our amazing volunteers.

Our Current Needs

The volunteers at Kansas City Hospice do many, many different things, from hand holding to highly-skilled services. Right now, we have the greatest need for:

  • Hairdressers
  • Massage therapists
  • Notaries
  • Front desk for Northcare Hospice House
  • Pet therapists
  • Companionship in outlying areas (Excelsior Springs, Independence, Raytown, Smithville)

Award-Winning Volunteers

This year, a number of our volunteers have won awards for their service. Recently, three volunteers were honored with 70 Over 70 Awards. Kansas City’s 70 Over 70 Awards, a celebration recognizing 70 individuals from a variety of backgrounds who inspire others and improve our community.

Nancy Buzzell

Nancy is the volunteer warehouse manager at Top Drawer Resale Boutique. Top Drawer is entirely staffed by volunteers and everything we sell is donated, new or gently used. All proceeds go directly to Kansas City Hospice & Palliative Care to support all of our programs and services.

Kansas City Hospice

Elaine Heintz

Elaine volunteers at Kansas City Hospice House where she spends time with patients and families and is know for her “listening ear and big hugs.” She also arranges flowers, makes memory bears or pillows, and contributes more than 1,000 memory hearts each year.

Sally Jenkins

Also at Top Drawer, Sally volunteers eight hours each week. She helps with store operations in so many capacities. Sally may spend her day pricing, processing new donations, managing inventory, assisting customers or training new volunteers. She makes shopping memorable for our customers and inspires our other volunteers.

Carol Barnett

Along with her two brothers, Tom and John Isenberg, Carol was named Philanthropist of the Year by Nonprofit Connect. It’s a rare day NOT to see Carol rushing through one of our facilities, breathlessly racing off to see another patient or to make sure everyone has what they need for the day’s challenges. Besides serving on the Board of Directors and working tirelessly on fundraising events, her favorite time is the one-on-one time she spends with patients and their families.

Kathy Corbin and her original jewelry designs

Kathy Corbin

After selling her bead shop, Kathy came to volunteer at Top Drawer to give back after seeing the wonderful hospice care given to a friend. She created the Jewelry for Hospice Program and won the Heart of Hospice Volunteer Award given by the Missouri Hospice & Palliative Care organization. Kathy turned her passion into a blessing both for Top Drawer and for the people who receive her unique creations.

Sherry Ainsworth and Eddie Scanlon

The first Solace House Awards honored Sherry Ainsworth and Eddy Scanlon, who have dedicated thousands of hours over the past two decades to children and families served by Solace House. Click their names to watch videos saluting their dedication to Solace House Center for Grief and Healing.

volunteer for the baking brigadeThe Baking Brigade

Just this week we launched a new volunteer opportunity. Maybe you can’t volunteer on a regular schedule, but would you like to be one of our short-notice bakers?

The Baking Brigade helps us fulfill wishes for families in our care at one of our two hospice houses.

There are so many ways to help!

  • Assist patients – Support patients and families during their journey through illness.
  • Kansas City Hospice House – You can work with patients, families and guests, or assist with activities that don’t involve direct patient contact. See the many ways to help.
  • NorthCare Hospice House – There are many opportunities at our inpatient facility in the Northland. 
  • Baking or Cooking at Hospice House – Help prepare meals for patients or bake goodies.
  • Office/Administrative – Help with administrative tasks to keep our daily operations running smoothly.
  • Special Events – Find out how your school, church, business or other group can get involved. Learn more
  • Group Activities – Call about projects to let your school, church, business or other group get involved.
  • Top Drawer Resale Shop.
  • Memory Pillow and Bears – Volunteers who enjoy sewing use a favorite shirt to create a pillow or bear as a keepsake.
  • Pet Peace of Mind – Help keep patients and their beloved pets together by offering your time and talents in supporting animal care. 
  • Lifetime Legacy/Lasting Conversations – Help patients and families record life stories and make lasting memories with either a video or audio recording. Read more.
  • We Honor Veterans – We are looking for veteran-to-veteran volunteers. 
  • Grief Support – Help our grief support specialists, Solace HouseCamp Carousel and Camp Erin
  • Extended Presence – When someone comes to the last 24-48 hours of life, specially trained volunteers may help staff provide support, whether holding a hand, listening to a family member reminisce or just providing a caring presence.

Leave a Reply

Our Programs

There's a long list of hospices in Kansas City, but there's only one Kansas City Hospice. Our programs provide comprehensive expert care for all ages at all stages of serious illness.

Hospice Care

When the focus shifts to comfort instead of treatment, care comes to your home or nursing facility with a plan tailored to your needs, including emotional and spiritual support for the whole family.

Read More

Hospice Care

Palliative Home Health Care

When complex needs benefit from a team approach, supportive home care brings the care you need, with 24/7 nurse support for pain, stress and symptoms due to serious illness.

Read More

Palliative Home Health Care

Community-Based Palliative Care

Beginning as early as diagnosis and at any stage of serious illness, our nurse practitioners make home visits as needed to help coordinate your care and provide expert pain and symptom management.

Read More

Community-Based Palliative Care
Hospice House

Hospice House

When symptoms cannot be easily managed at home, two hospice houses provide 24/7 expert care in comfortable home-line settings where family members can be relieved of caregiving duties to focus on loved ones.

Read More

Carousel Pediatric Care

Carousel provides palliative and hospice care for perinatal and for babies through young adults with a dedicated team of pediatric nurses, social workers, chaplains and other specialists.

Read More

Carousel Pediatric Care
Solace House

Solace House

Our center for grief and healing supports individuals and families who have been impacted by the death of a loved one, whether anticipated, or sudden and unexpected. We provide opportunities to share, listen, learn and heal with peer group support from age 3 through adult.

Read More