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​​Kevin Rodrigues:  Fulfilling an Impactful Volunteer Role at Toronto Rehab

Kevin R.

Volunteering at Toronto Rehab's University Centre means providing engaging and meaningful opportunities to Volunteers, providing staff with assistance within their unit and most importantly, being an important piece of providing a positive patient experience.  One of the most impactful roles in this regard is the Unit Support role at Toronto Rehab.  At TRI: UC, we have Unit Support Volunteers on our Geriatrics Unit, Neuro ABI Units, Neuro Stroke Unit and MSK Units.

Today we speak with Kevin Rodrigues, one of our great Unit Support Volunteers on our Geriatrics Unit.

Kevin was first interested in volunteering at Toronto Rehab because he was considering applying to the York Seneca Rehabilitation Program and he wanted to get a sense of what it would be like to communicate with and interact with patients within a rehabilitation facility.  He wanted to make the most informed decision he could about his educational future.

Kevin has been volunteering as a Unit Support Volunteer on our Geriatrics Unit since July 2015.  When asked what keeps him motivated as a Volunteer he advised me that it's the patients on the unit; when seeing patients over a few weeks, you invest in seeing them every shift thereafter.  "I enjoy hearing about their life stories or talking to them about common interests.  There was one patient who I could spend a whole hour with just talking about the old music we liked.  Right now my favourite part of volunteering is that one of my valued peers (Volunteer) plays music for everyone on the unit; we all enjoy the song choices and join in to sing along with the patients."

Kevin recommends volunteering at Toronto Rehab because the little time that you give of yourself means a lot to the patients.  "The time goes fast because you are having fun, especially when playing games with the patients."

Kevin is studying Psychology at York University and plans to apply to the York Seneca Rehabilitation Program.  He would love to work in the field thereafter for a few years and then perhaps pursue a graduate degree that builds on what he can do in the field.  "Outside of school and volunteering, I really enjoy all of the arts.  I help friends with media arts when they need an extra actor or camera man.  During the summer I try to read a few novels; I am a slow reader because of my dyslexia, but I still enjoy the activity."

Ken, thank you for choosing to volunteer at Toronto Rehab. I have no doubt that you bring a smile to the patients' faces each Friday that you are in. I look forward to our continued relationship with you!

​Misty Tudor
Program Coordinator, Volunteer Resources TRI-UC