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News from 2009

Special Team Helps GAMC Look it's Best
Media Contact: Alicia Gonzalez (818) 800-3113


GLENDALE, CA - September 15, 2009 - It’s Monday morning and three special individuals arrive at Glendale Adventist Medical Center (GAMC) ready to begin their volunteer work. They check-in, put on their gloves, get their tools and instructions and start their work. They take a walk through various paths cleaning up litter and picking up discarded cigarette butts scattered throughout the campus grounds. What makes them unique is that they all have developmental disabilities and their work is part of a collaboration between GAMC and Tierra Del Sol in Sunland, a private, nonprofit 501-(c)(3) organization.

“These volunteers are an important part of the Glendale Adventist Medical Center health care team. They help keep the grounds beautiful to make the hospital experience more pleasant for patients and their families. It’s a win-win situation for all involved.” stated GAMC volunteer director Elizabeth Mirzaian. “We appreciate all they do for us and they gain valuable work experience through the work they do.”

Tierra Del Sol's mission is to serve the community by empowering individuals with developmental and multiple disabilities to realize their greatest human potential, become as independent as possible within their families and community, and establish a valued role in society. Those working at GAMC are part of Tierra Del Sol's Community Integration Program. which promotes volunteer opportunities as a learning experience for their clients.

“We are so proud to place some of our people at Glendale Adventist Medical Center where they contribute to the beauty of the grounds. It gives them such a sense of pride and accomplishment” said Jackie William, client coordinator at Tierra Del Sol. “Our goal is to help each individual discover and develop their unique abilities, interests and goals. We then assist them in finding a place to match their skills with the needs of one of our 55 partners.”

The volunteers -- two men and one woman -all enjoy being outdoors and being part of the workforce. They have a sense of pride in keeping the grounds looking their best and they enjoy knowing they are contributing to their community. For James, 26, it’s his first work experience and could be a road to a fulltime paying job in the future. He and Michael, who is a bit older, enjoy working together, joking as move through the grounds, doing their work and sharing the camaraderie of the experience. Joann, the eldest, has found a place she feels comfortable. Her family members said she “came back beaming” after her first day.

The program gives them more than just the opportunity to hone their skills. They feel self-respect and ownership in GAMC when they are wearing their name badges and are recognized by -- and often thanked -- by some of the doctors, nurses and others on staff. All three also enjoy the recognition they get when they take their lunch break in the cafeteria and mingle with other hospital staff and volunteers. Their volunteer work at the hospital represents an excellent environment for them to learn new skills and perform vital tasks.

Glendale Adventist Medical Center works diligently to infuse its daily activities with the hospital's mission of providing compassionate, professional health care services for the whole person - body, mind and spirit. Working with volunteers from Tierra del Sol is part of carrying out the mission of improving the health of the communities served. Offering compassionate care through a unique blend of services sets GAMC apart from others.

The partnership with Tierra del Sol is just one of the volunteer opportunities at Glendale Adventist. The hospital is an integral part of the community and offers many options for volunteers to give back to their community by working at the hospital.
For more information on volunteer opportunities at the hospital, please call the Volunteer Department at (818) 409-8057.