NSHA volunteer: Ambassador volunteer Erica DeCoste relishes her interactions with visitors at Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre

Erica DeCoste is an ambassador volunteer at Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre. (contributed)
Erica DeCoste is an ambassador volunteer at Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre. (contributed)

Erica DeCoste feels a personal connection to St. Martha’s Regional Hospital in Antigonish. She was born there and many of her family members have received care there. 

She’s glad to be able to give back as an ambassador volunteer at the Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre, which is attached to St. Martha’s Regional Hospital. 

Every Tuesday, DeCoste helps patients, families and visitors navigate their way to appointments.  

She relishes her interactions with visitors, finding most people friendly and appreciative of her help. 

Before volunteering at the Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre, DeCoste was concerned that other people’s emotional distresses could affect her easily. 

However, after volunteering a couple of shifts, she was pleasantly surprised about how most people were quite friendly and positive, and how she readily stayed calm and composed in her interactions with all visitors. 

Cathy Berkvens, education & support nurse and SHARE coordinator said, “It is very good having Erica (and the other volunteers) in the Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre!”

“We have lots of patients, families and others who need directions finding their way in our building. Often the patient and their family members are trying to find a physician’s office or a clinic for a scheduled appointment and not knowing where to go adds to their stress.” 

“Erica is a friendly face for them and is great at helping them find their way. She also makes a special point each week to stop by our offices to say hi. We enjoy seeing her each week!”    

Annie Gillis, registered nurse and Virtual Care lead, agrees. “Erica is a lovely young lady. All who enter the Antigonish Health and Wellness Centre are greeted with her warm smile and offer of assistance to find their way to an appointment.”

For those who may be considering volunteering at a local hospital, DeCoste offers, “Just go for it; it really is rewarding.”

For more information about volunteer opportunities at NSHA, visit http://www.nshealth.ca/volunteer