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Waveny Celebrates with Hundreds of Volunteers

Waveny Celebrates with Hundreds of Volunteers

Posted on April 24, 2015

Waveny LifeCare Network recently recognized its many volunteers for their unique contributions of time and talent throughout the Network, including Waveny Care Center, The Village, the Adult Day Program and The Inn.

More than 200 volunteers gathered together on ‘Main Street’ at The Village in celebration and recognition of their service to Waveny throughout the year. “As I look around this room I see a diverse group of individuals who have made a decision to serve,” said Rebecca Albrecht, Director of Human Resources for Waveny. “I see hearts larger than life. I see individuals rich with soul.”  

More than 80 active Waveny volunteers were recognized for service-hour milestones ranging from 50 to 5,500 hours. In addition to recognizing hours of service, 13 loyal volunteers received awards commemorating their anniversaries of 5, 10, 15, and 20, 35 and 40 years of service at Waveny. A special honor was given to Waveny’s longest-serving volunteer, Fiz Tomaselli, for marking four decades of service as Waveny celebrated its 40th anniversary on April 22.

Specially recognized for their volunteer service in beautifying Waveny were the New Canaan Garden Club, the Beautification League, The Gardeners, the PEO group, the Tuesday Ladies, New Canaan Florist Garden & Gifts, and the Stamford Garden Club. Also recognized were the New Canaan Jewish Women’s Group, former members of RSVP (the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program), Waveny’s Pet Therapy volunteers, and the Healing Touch Volunteers who apply Reiki principles and energy work to enhance the well-being of Waveny’s residents.

“Being connected makes us feel purposeful in our world and service brings with it a deep sense of connection,” said Debbie Perron, Director of Volunteers for Waveny. “Waveny becomes our extended family and there is no better feeling than when a resident asks ‘when are you coming back dear?’ You are all living proof of what happiness research reveals: That close relationships and service boost our well-being.” Over 500 individual volunteers collectively donate more than 15,000 hours of service to Waveny each year, with nearly 200 new volunteers joining Waveny over the past year alone.

Following additional words of thanks from Todd Lampert, Waveny Board Vice-Chairman and Bill Piper, Waveny’s CEO, awards were presented to the following volunteers for their outstanding service-hour milestones:

5,500 hours of service – Catherine Hollstein
3,900 hours of service – Fiz Tomaselli
3,250 hours of service – Lila Coleman and Dominique Gredoni
3,000 hours of service – Marion Blose and Alice Widen
1,750 hours of service – Sheila McMann
1,500 hours of service – Joan Hopkins and Chris Snell
1,250 hours of service – Judy Gilroy and Denise Widen
1,000 hours of service – Rita Stone
900 hours of service – Mary Tanzi and JoAnn Dwyer
700 hours of service – Karen Byrne
600 hours of service – Richard St. Francis
500 hours of service – Eric Johnson, Fran Keleher, Flo Milano, Linda Neave, Suzanne Scutt and Virginia Celaya-Lowry
400 hours of service – Cynthia Wright and Pat McGovern
300 hours of service – Christer Dreifaldt, Nancy Harding, Daniel Kraus, Laura Tensen and Jen Weintraub
200 hours of service – Jo Bodak, Michelle Dore, Judy Gemza, Betsy Wrenn, Marcy McKee, Megan Archino and Patti Jo Pflug
100 hours of service – Dionna Carlson, Hui Cui, Sarah Davidson, Millie Gangi, Sherry Gerstein, Marilyn Gifford,  Larry Kenney, Sharon Krishnan, Diane Muldowney, Kerry Raffaele, Susan Rosen, Rebecca Serven, Lester and Elaine Sharlach, Susan Staudt, Alex Urbahn, Emily Bates, Ursula Cotta, Matthew Gromisch, Katie McAdams, Marlee Ready, Porter Sigg and Ana Yoc
50 hours of service –   Emma Castiglione, Kim Crosby, Kitty D’Agostino, Patty DiCostanzo, Sean Geercken, Nancy Haeberle, Sister Hutchison, Rami Jones, Brendon Kealy, Marisol Luciano, Julian Mastroianni, Heidi Mulcahy, Kate Regan, Elder Reid, Phil Restivo, Gus Reynolds, Natalia Sacristan, Carol Smith, Candice Wang, Pat Wood, Elder Wulff, Conor Brady, Allison Clark, Amani El Dada, Catherine Harris, Gunita Klavina, Alia Nolan, Jamie Schlim and Skylar Severance

Recognition awards for years of service were presented to:

40 years of service – Fiz Tomaselli
35 years of service – Janecke Madsen
20 years of service – Sara Smith
15 years of service – Ruth Johnson and Mary Tanzi
10 years of service – Eric Johnson
5 years of service – June Bird, Michele Dore, Bala Nair, Linda Neave, Susan Staudt, Catharine Sturgess, Cynthia Wright

The awards ceremony marked the mid-point of a week-long celebration in honor of National Volunteer Appreciation Week, which was themed “Volunteers: A Work of Heart.”  “Waveny was built by the community to serve the community,” said Bill Piper, Waveny CEO. “All of you are a major support to that mission. We thank you for everything you do to make Waveny the special place it is and a jewel in the town of New Canaan.”

Volunteers and Junior Volunteers help in a variety of ways throughout Waveny LifeCare Network’s continuum of care. In addition to providing one-on-one attention, they assist with activities for Waveny’s residents, patients and program participants like helping with social hour, afternoon tea, window painting, reception, gardening, flower arranging and intergenerational programs, which include running the General Store or playing games and cards. Volunteers also help with special projects in the dining, marketing, development and therapeutic recreation departments. Volunteer jobs are tailored to individual skills and interests, with orientation and training sessions provided on-site by Waveny LifeCare Network.  For more information about volunteering at Waveny, visit our Volunteer page and please contact Debbie Perron, Director of Volunteers, at 203.594.5334 or [email protected].

Celebrating 40 years of serving the community, Waveny LifeCare Network provides a comprehensive continuum of healthcare to serve the growing needs of older adults from all areas. Waveny is a not-for-profit organization that offers independent living at The Inn, assisted living for people with Alzheimer’s and memory loss at The Village, and skilled nursing at Waveny Care Center. It also includes Waveny Home Healthcare, Waveny at Home, the Brown Geriatric Evaluation Clinic, Geriatric Care Management, an Adult Day Program available on weekdays with flexible hours, inpatient and outpatient Rehabilitation Services, and respite programs at The Village and Care Center. For information call 1-855-WAVENY-1 or visit www.waveny.org.

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