The Magic of Volunteering

October 21, 2019

Pamela Fogan recalls the day she met a reluctant teenage girl whose mother had pressured her to volunteer at Suburban Hospital. “She made it very clear she didn’t want to be here,” says Fogan, the hospital’s director of volunteer services. Today, that young woman, now 31, is a pediatric oncologist in Philadelphia who says the experience of assisting patients inspired her medical career.

It’s one of many stories Fogan shares of volunteers transformed by supporting hospital patients and staff members. Volunteering is no longer the domain of teenagers often required to perform community service. Increasingly, adults looking to change careers or new retirees wanting to keep busy are stepping in. Suburban Hospital’s largest group of volunteers, Fogan says, is people between the ages of 65 and 90.

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