Congratulations to Ben Rosenberg, recipient of the Youth Volunteer Award at this year’s Mary Catherine Strobel Volunteer Awards celebration!
Ben is a high school junior who makes time to volunteer with Alive Hospice. More about Ben:
Despite his youth, high school junior Ben Rosenberg demonstrates an uncommon maturity and reverence for the end of life, an impressive understanding of hospice, and an inspiring attentiveness to the needs of the dying. As an Alive Hospice volunteer, Ben gives his time, presence, and service for the benefit of terminally ill patients.
In 2012, Ben formed a club at his high school to grant special wishes to terminally ill patients as part of The DreamCatchers Foundation. The first wish Ben and the club fulfilled restored something to a patient’s life that was sorely missing. Mr. Raymond Hollars played the guitar since the age of 12, but in his later years he found his prized guitar was too heavy for him to lift. Within days, Ben and his fellow club members surprised Mr. Hollars with a new, lighter guitar. Just like that, music was restored to his life.
â€śI played it as soon as I got it,â€ť Mr. Hollars said. â€śI just love music.â€ť Mr. Hollars even asked Ben to sign the guitar, which he kept close at hand until his death in November.
No one should have to face the end of life alone, and volunteers like Ben give a gift many of us take for granted while weâ€™re healthy: the joy of company and conversation. Having someone to talk to â€“ especially a warm, personable, and compassionate person like Ben â€“ can go a long way in lifting patientsâ€™ spirits. Ben is an example not only to his peers, but to all of us.
Click here for photos from the 2013 Strobel Volunteer Awards.