The service project I have completed is as a Restful Nights Volunteer at The James Hospital. I have over 70 hours of service with the organization and have enjoyed my two years at The James immensely. Restful Nights is a volunteer program at The James in which the other volunteers and I take a cart filled with free amenities to each floor and offer the items to patients and spend time talking with patients to brighten their day even for just a short time. The Restful Nights program is one of the few volunteer programs that offers the opportunity to experience patient interactions. We are entrusted with entering patients rooms and their personal space to not only offer them small products to make them feel acknowledged and comfortable, but this program gives us a chance to talk with patients, listen to their stories, and spend time with them and offer them company while they must stay at the hospital. As a Restful Nights volunteer at The James, I have learned the value of listening to someone as they speak and how appreciated you can be by just being present. I’ve learned to truly read social cues and how to communicate with strangers; each time I volunteer I see a new face and strike up conversations with patients and am given the gift of being a support system for total strangers. The patients at The James are always so appreciative of our presence and participation in the program, and it makes me feel like I am truly giving back to my community.

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