Monday, December 31, 2012

Greetings for 2013!

You have my best wishes for a good 2013.

You can make your 2013 better by becoming a volunteer at Champaign County Nursing Home. We have some volunteers who have been commited to CCNH for more than 15 years! We don't require a lot of time, only an interest in adding to the quality of life of our residents. One hour a month would be great; and, if you can do more, it will be appreciated.

Here is the link to our volunteer application:

Do the right thing...volunteer!


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Please help us!!

We need more volunteers!

The volunteers that have been helping are doing a good job. But, we need more of them to become a part of what happens here. I have said it before...we don't require a certain time commitment from our volunteers. You come in as your schedule permits. One hour a month is good. 2 hours a week is wonderful!

High in the list of needs is visiting with the residents. Be a good neighbor; sit and chat for a while, talk about whatever. You might surprised at how good you feel after spending 10 minutes with one of our elders.

It doesn't take much to get started. You complete and information sheet, we conduct an interview and then give a tour of the building. We talk about being with elders in a nursing home. And, then you are set to go! If you want a 'target list' of people to visit, we can provide that for you; or you might want to just go about the building and visit randomly.

We do require an appointment for that first meeting. Call 217-384-3784 ext 5240. OK? OK!


Thursday, December 20, 2012

I have been busy!


I have been busy and have not had the time to post anything new. That's the way it is around here late in the year. Once we get through Thanksgiving, then we have lots going on. Family members have been here to spend time with their loved one.

But that is almost over and we will soon be in the doldrums of January. Please, please, please! Consider coming to the nursing home to visit with some of our community's elders. With all the excitement ending, our residents need to be kept from being depressed.

Send me an email and we'll set up something! OK? OK!


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Christmas Caroling

We are almost at the season for Christmas Carolers at Champaign County Nursing Home. We welcome both small and large groups. We do have a calendar set up so that we don't have too many on any given day. You will need to contact me so that we can make sure that what you want to do will work with our schedule.

Our residents enjoy these kinds of things, as the December weather generally gets gloomy and the singing brightens spirits.

As long as I am mentioning singing, if you would like to share your talent, let me know. We would really like to have you on our calendar of events. A one-time performance is great and a regular monthly gig is better.

Let me know about this. OK? OK!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

Pet Visits at Champaign County Nursing Home

We love pets!

Pets are wonderful volunteers (their owners are too!) and we have several pets that come here on a regular basis. We will always welcome more.

You will need to provide evidence from a Vet that indicates all shots are up-to-date. You will need to meet with me as we talk about pets and elders in a nursing home. We'll walk around the building, exploring new sounds and smells. All pets must be on a leash.

As with most volunteers, we don't set your hours. You come in as your schedule permits.

Ask me questions! OK? OK!


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Bible Study at the nursing home

For a long time, we have had Bible study on Wednesday morning at the nursing home. The woman who had been volunteering her time got a job that conflicted with her time here. So, we are seeking a person who would come here on the 1st and 3rd Wednesday for a 30 - 40 minute Bible Study session.

You control what to do. We won't tell you all the whats and hows and stuff. We will have several residents in our chapel and you will be able to do the Bible Study in whatever way is appropriate. In the past, there was a person come in and a couple of hymns were sung, too. That is an option to consider.

Let me know about this opportunity. We would like to re-start this activity. OK? OK!


Friday, November 9, 2012

George Washington

I recently discovered "George Washington's Rules of Civility" on the internet. There are 110 maxims that helped shape and guide America's first President. I have read them all and I am including some of them, without comment, here. (Some grammar items have been modernized.)

When in company, put not your hands to any part of the body not usually discovered.

Shift not yourself in the sight of others, nor gnaw your nails.

In writing or speaking, give to every person his due title according to his degree and the custom of the place.

In your apparel be modest and endeavor to accommodate nature, rather than to procure admiration; keep to the fashion of your equals, such as civil and orderly with respect to time and places.

Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for 'tis better to be alone than in bad company.

Think before you speak, pronouce not imperfectly, nor bring out yours words to hastily, but orderly and distinctly.

Undertake not what you cannot perform but be careful to keep your promise.

Drink not too leisurely nor yet too hastily. Before and after drinking wipe your lips. Breathe not then or ever with too great a noise, for it is uncivil.

Rinse not your mouth in the presence of others.

Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire called conscience.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

January Opportunities

When the University of Illinois students are gone, we need help with some activities where the students generally assist. Among the things are Bingo on Saturday afternoons and Game Night on Monday.

We need helpers with Bingo on the following Saturdays: 12/22, 1/5, 1/12 and 1/19. The games start at 2:15, however set up starts before that. Ideal time for arrival is about 2:00. After the games, we will need help with transporting the residents and clean up of the area. That is generally done by 3:15. One hour and 15 minutes is all that we are asking. This would be appropriate for one to four people to help those residents who might have vision or hearing deficits; or there might help needed with motor skills.

Monday evening game night begins at 6:45. Again, help is need before and after for set up and clean up. The times needed would be about 6:30 until 7:45 (at the latest). One or two people (no more than that) would be wonderful.

If you want to help, let me know. OK? OK!


Wednesday, November 7, 2012


We need some help giving away things.

We have too many clothing items. Some of our residents gain or lose weight and their family members donate clothes to us. We have some clothing items that don't have resident's name on them and are thus 'lost' for long periods of time. We need to give away these things.

We have more books than the residents will read. Friendly neighbors donate them to us and we have too many. We need to clear off the shelves. We need to give away these things.

Are you aware of an appropriate place to give these items? Let me know!

We are NOT SOLICITING books or clothes or TVs or furniture or medical equipment.


Monday, October 29, 2012

Dementia training

Every new employee at CCNH is required to attend a 4-hour dementia training as part of the 2-day orientation. Some employees are required to attend a yearly 12-hour training. Neither of these is required of our volunteers.

However, if you would like to attend one of these sessions, you are welcome. If you would like to spend a significant amount of your volunteer time being with some of our residents with dementia, then I strongly suggest that you attend.

These are once a month sessions. Let me know if you want to attend, I'll give you more information.



Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Why are we here?

We care!

People don't go to a nursing home to die! People go to a nursing home because they need 24 hour nursing care. Sometimes, it is a matter of need some daily medications and there is no family member who can do that. We have people here who don't have much wrong, but they need to be here because they cannot live on their own and have home health aids come in is not practical.

Our residents have bad hearts, poor lung function, kidney failure, circulatory issues, Parkinson's Disease, Multiple Sclerosis and more. Come in a visit with them, learn about the aging process.

I need 90 minutes of your time for interview, orientation about working with elders and a tour. My usual office hours are 8 - 3 Monday through Friday. Contact me, let's get together.

Jim Hronek, Volunteer Coordinator
Champaign County Nursing Home

Saturday, October 6, 2012

County Music at CCNH

Do you play?

We have requests for certain kinds of music at CCNH. We have Celtic harp, singing, piano playing, bluegrass and big bands. We don't have County Music. Do you play? Do you know someone who would be willing to donate about 45 minutes once a month to share their talents?

Let me know. OK? OK!


Monday, October 1, 2012

October, 2012

Lots of things happening this month!

Oktoberfest will be at 2:15 on Friday the 12th. Lots of fun for this annual event.

A Pumkin Social will happen on the next Friday, the 19th.

We will also have a Halloween Party on the 31st. Costumes and all.

Please consider coming to enjoy the fun and getting to meet our residents.


Monday, September 24, 2012

Join our auxiliary

We need new members in the CCNH Auxiliary.

Our auxiliary has been a part of what we do since the mid 1960s. The members donate hundreds of hours each month to help our residents. Some do neighborly visits, some help in our general store, others do filing and other office chores and more.

However, our members are getting old and are not able to do as much as in the past. The members are moving to the side and we don't have enough new members to take over. I cordially invite you to consider joining our auxiliary. The dues are modest and you are not required to spend lots and lots of hours here. You don't need to attend meetings, although that would be good.

Let me know when you want to come in and explore what a rewarding experience it can be by volunteering at CCNH.



Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Donate iPods

Don't toss them! Donate them!

Our residents need to learn new technology. We are wanting to try something with those devices that are due to be replaced. As long as they work!

Let me know ! ! OK? OK!


Tuesday, September 11, 2012


A different kind of volunteering!

We have started something new at Champaign County Nursing Home. Movie night. With popcorn.

However, we would like a donation of a popcorn popper. Our thought is that the smell of fresh popped stuff will help draw residents to the movie. We have done some looking around and investigating many things. Walmart has a nice one (not too big and not too small) that has wheels for easy mobility. It is $147.00. Please consider donating a popcorn popper to CCNH.

Let me know when you will bring it to us.


Life is made up of years that mean nothing and the moments that mean it all.
C. P. Snow

Friday, September 7, 2012

Share your musical talents!

We have many opportunities for you!

There are several organized activities that occur each month and music would be a welcome addition. Generally, on Friday afternoon at 2:15 we gather together to do something special. A themed party; most would be appropriate for music.

The last Friday of the month is Root Beer Floats.

The first Wednesday of the month is Ice Cream Social.

There are other times that music would work. Will you share your talents?

Let me know! OK? OK!


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Current Events

Monday afternoons at 2:30.

Although several of our residents subscribe to a newspaper and some watch TV, many don't keep up with what is going on locally or nationally. We offere current events in our chapel on Monday afternoons. It lasts about 30 - 40 minutes and we would like to have a volunteer come in weekly to help with this activity.

Let me know - OK? OK!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Guys Getting Together

Men's Meetings

Once a week, several of our male residents get together to talk about...whatever. We have set aside about 30 minutes for this group discussion/activity. We are seeking a man who will be able to relate to what these guys find of importance. You don't need any special training or knowledge, just a good attitude to spend some time with the men at CCNH.

Want more information? Send an email. We'll come up with a plan.


Be intent upon the perfection of the present day.
William Law

Friday, August 17, 2012

Birthday parties!

Every month we have a birthday party!

That party is the last Friday of the month at 2:15. Cake, beverages and sometimes there is live entertainment. The party lasts only about 45 minutes, but the residents have an opportunity to have fun!

We also have birthday parties for volunteers. Hannah was celebrating her first birthday with the residents. Hannah (and her mommy) visit on a regular basis. The residents enjoy the opportunity to have visits like this.

Come in, bring your special birthday person. Let me know when you want to do this (you select the day or do it the last Friday). This is an opportunity for many memories.


Always laugh when you can. It is cheap medicine.
Lord Byron

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Show that you care!

Visit and sit.

That is not difficult, except that we need a person who would be willing to come to Champaign County Nursing Home to sit with a family as their loved one comes to the end of life.

There is no training for being a caring person like this. We won't ask that you sit there through the night, or for more than a few minutes. But having a caring person be there can be a comfort to the family. You can talk or not, whatever happens is OK with us. You don't have to be a religous person and we don't want you to preach. But we do want you to be able to adapt to whatever the situation requires.

Often, a hospice program will do this. But, there are some residents and their families who decide that they don't want hospice, which is their free choice. This situation might arise once or twice a year or it might occur more often. We never can predict how this might play out.

This does not have to be a long-term commitment. You can come once, decide that you don't feel comfortable doing it and then be done. However, if you would be willing to come in with a day's notice, that will help us.

Think about it. If believe that you have the right qualities, then let me know.


Monday, August 6, 2012

Monday afternoon

Games (of sorts) -

Monday afternoon at 3:30, we have games. is actually upper-body range-of-motion type of activity. Bean Bag Toss, Volleyball, Golf, Frisbee Bowling, and more. These are the kinds of things that are fun and help our residents use some muscles that might not be used. It is also a good social occasion.

We need one person to help with this, one hour a week. That is all we ask. Get here about 3:20 and be gone before 4:30 (that is the time that the evening meal begins service and they all want to get there in time to get the best food!!).

This is a great way to get to know some of our residents. You will be required to go through the complete orientation process. That includes an interview, information about working with elders in a nursing home and a complete tour. Appointments required.

Let me know! OK? OK!


I believe we are all here to be bright torches that light one another's way.
Bernie S. Siegel

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Saturday mornings

Coffee Hour

We have coffee hour every Saturday morning. It starts at 9:30 and lasts about 45 minutes. If you would like to help act as host(ess), and you have the time on a regular basis, this would be the perfect opportunity for you. We would expect you to arrive by 9:15 to help set up the area and transport residents. You would help serve coffee and snacks. Then about 10:15, help clean up and transport residents again. Your total time would be less than 70 minutes.

This is a great way to meet some of our residents and help our activity staff. I ask that you be regular with your attendance, ideally every week; however some help is better than no help.

Let me know! OK? OK!


The supreme happiness in life is the conviction that we are loved.
Victor Hugo

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Will you do windows?

Lots of windows here!

Our housekeepers take care of the insides, but we really need a person or two to wash the outsides. It is not difficult, we have the sponge/squeegee. Take your time. A couple of hours a week will get many done; and by the time you get all the way around (500+ windows), you might consider starting all over.

Do something good for our residents, let them see the outside through a clean window!


Life is like a sewer. What you get out of it depends on what you put into it.
Tom Lehrer

Monday, July 23, 2012

Monday evenings at 6:30

Games! Games! Games!

We have games on Monday evenings. The activity begins at 6:45. We need a person to help with this. In July we are having The Price is Right, Trivial Pursuit, Crazy 8's and more. We need a caring person who enjoys games and will 'help' our residents and our activity assistant. This lasts for one hour or a bit more. It will be a great opportunity to have fun as you spend some quality time with some of our residents.


Our chief want in life is somebody who shall make us do what we can.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Community Service at CCNH

Are you required to perform community service?

You can come to CCNH and put in your hours. You won't be able to have contact with our residents though. We have some options for you to consider.

The first one is to help in our laundry area. We do laundry every day! Since we have to do it daily, someone on the staff is off on any given day and yet the work load does not change. As a volunteer in our laundry area, you would not be involved with sorting items and loading the washers, but you would do folding of sheets, towels, blankets, etc. The most practical time to start is between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m. You will generally be able to serve three to four hours (that is not guaranteed) depending on the work load.

The second choice is washing windows on the outside of our building. There are more than 500 and we don't have the personnel to handle the outside windows. This option would need to be Monday through Friday, mornings only.

Third option is outside grounds maintenance. Pick up trash, rake leaves, pick up cigarette butts, fill bird feeders, etc. Of course, weather will play a big role in this option.

All of the above opportunities are good for those who need to do a lot of hours. This next one is a one-hour chore. We need some office help, sorting, filing, etc. for the people in our accounting area.

Can you help? Send an email.


Thursday, July 12, 2012

It's time to ask a favor -

I don't do it. My wife does. I don't know what all the talk is about, that sort of makes me old-fashioned (someone has to be). I don't do Facebook! There, I let everyone know.

I understand that it is more than an up-and-coming deal. However, that doesn't mean that I must do it. You remember someone saying something about jumping off a cliff, and how just because others are doing it doesn't mean that it is right!

So, now the favor. I am aware that there is such a thing as 'social meda' that encompasses Facebook. What I would like to have happen is that you mention Champaign County Nursing Home on Facebook. We need to get the word out to more people. University of Illinois students come and help, but those are usually for only one semester and then that is it. We need more community members to come here for long-term involvement.

I don't really care what wonderful words you use, but please say something. If it is about me, OK. If it is about the residents, OK. If it is about what we do, OK.


Our chief want in life is somebody who shall make us do what we can.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, July 6, 2012

What can you tell me about yourself?

If I were a reporter and intended to write a story about you, what would you want me to write?

Are there things that you think you aren't good at, which make you worry?

Tell me about your perceived shortcomings.

You have two important responsibilities; both have a deadline that is impossible to meet. You cannot accomplish both. How do you hand that situation?

Can you set priorities and follow through to gain the desired results?

Let me know. I am as close as email, let's get you involved with Champaign County Nursing Home.

Jim Hronek

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Newspapers and our residents!

This is a short one. Some of our residents subscribe to the newspaper. We need someone to distribute the papers. Morning hours only. Choices: Monday through Friday before 8:30; OR Saturday and Sunday before 9:30. It might take 15 minutes or 30 minutes - it depends on how long you chat with the residents as you make your rounds.
Let me know. You can start almost immediately.


The secret of life is not to what you like but to like what you do.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Have some time, but only once in a while?

Here is how you can help us! And you will be helping our residents, too.

Every day we do laundry here. Personal items for the residents, table cloths for the dining rooms, sheets, towels and blankets, and more. Our laundry workers start early morning and are out of here by 1:30. We could use an extra set of hands getting things folded after they come from the dryer. You won't be sorting or putting things in the washers, mostly just standing (and a thick cushion) and getting stuff done.

If you want to help, come on in. Tell the receptionist that you want to work in our laundry. She will get someone to escort you to the basement. Since you won't be having any direct contact with our residents, you won't need to do all the usual paper work. However, if you do want to spend time with the residents, you will need to complete some forms and have some orientation about working with elders.

This starts early, your best time to be here is between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. How long will it take? Generally you will be done by 11:00 or noon. Some days are busier than others. If you have questions about this, or any volunteer opportunity, send an email.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

When I started this blog,

I promised our administrator that I would keep it relevant to what we do, how we do it, etc. I have good about doing that. And, mostly, I will continue to do that. However, I might sometimes go off on a bit of a tangent. This post just might be one of those tangents.

I really enjoy being the volunteer coordinator. In fact, I brag that I have the best job in the building! Generally I answer only to myself, and as you have been reading, I am a genuine person. If fact, I am the opitome of being Mr. Nice Guy!

However, nothing lasts forever and I will be retiring in January of next year. Yep, less than 200 days until I leave CCNH. They won't officially post a job opening until I give my formal 2-week notice in late December. However, if you would like to be considered for this position you just might want to come here and see what I do. I can spend lots of time with you as I explain the ins and outs of this position. Good things? Your own office (no sharing); you get to meet lots of caring people; you will be able to work limited hours (32 hours in five days). Bad things? The pay; dealing with family members who want to believe that this is a resort or something; and some of the co-workers don't have a great work ethic.

All jobs have goods and bads. I believe that this one has more goods! If you want to come in a learn about the postion, let me know. It will help if you get to be a known person here by volunteering a lot. You will become familiar with the residents, the staff and the volunteers who pass through this office.

Do you have that little bit of space in your brain that shows empathy and caring? Can you be organized? Are you willing to give more than what you get paid? Let me know!


Monday, June 25, 2012

Enough already!!

I just went back an looked at some of my previous posts. I promise, no more entreaties for our landscape and/or bird situation.

I will, however, start a new crusade! We need a special volunteer. Please consider this if you can work independently and some hours that might be shorter one week and then longer the next week. It is not difficult and you have an opportunity to interact with some of our residents.

Here is some back story: whenever a new resident comes to the nursing home we need to make sure that clothing does not go astray. A resident who has been here awhile also needs to make sure that things don't end up in our lost area. To help combat that situation we press name labels on items.

We need someone who will come in and do that. It could be 15 minutes or it could take a couple of hours, one never knows how much there is to be done. We use a small heated press to affix the labels, that takes only a few seconds. However, we have lots and lots of things to do. Currently, we have one woman (in her 80s) come here on Monday and Thursday mornings. On Thursday, she has a helper. We really, really need someone to be here on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and even the weekends. We do laundry every day and there are always items that need to be dealt with.

Please, please consider helping with this project. You can start immediately. Nothing fancy to have happen first. Contact me today.


True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice that produces beggars needs restructuring. Martin Luther King

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Summer has arrived in East Central Illinois!

At least, now it is official. For that past few months it has seemed like summer. Now that summer has arrived, the next thing we need is moisture. Speaking of moisture, we need someone who can help with watering plants on our property. Hook up the hose and water plants, trees, flowers, etc. In a few places, we don't have enough hose to reach from the faucet to the area needing water. I have been filling watering cans and toting them.

You might ask how long this opportunity will last - and that is a good question. It depends on the weather. If we get substantial rain, then the need is lessened. A good soaking is what the plants need and if the rain does not provide that, then the watering will take more time. You will be able to come in as your schedule permits and stay for as long as you feel it is appropriate.

Let me know if you can help with this.


No man is a failure who is enjoying life.
William Feather

Friday, June 15, 2012

One of my volunteers, Connie, gave me a book a year ago and I keep it on my desk. There are many quotes in it that I use here and others places. Reflections on Life by Allen Klein is a great small book for those who might need a bit of inspiration.

Here is a good quote from one of the first pages:

Getting born is like being given a ticket to the theatrical event called life. It's like going to the theater. Now, all that ticket will get you, is through the door. It doesn't get you a good time and it doesn't get you a bad time. You go in and sit down and you either love the show or you don't. If you do, terrific. And if you don't - that's show business.

Stewart Emery, Actualizations

Do you have a 'favorite' quote? Let me know!


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Do you like to be outdoors?

For the past four years, I have been the person to take care of landscaping chores at the nursing home. I enjoy my time out there, I have few interruptions. However, I have discovered that it is more difficult to keep ahead of the weeding and watering part. I have tried to implement plantings of flowers and bushes and trees that need little maintenance, and I have done well that way. However, the recent dry weather (with an occasional spit of rain) and the weeds are trying my patience.

Please consider volunteering at Champaign County Nursing Home. It will take only one or two hours each week and those hours can happen as you have time and as the weather permits. If you don't know a lot, I can teach! However, I would like to have a long-term commitment, not just for a few weeks or months this year!

Think about what you can do to hadd to the quality of life (viewing beauty) of our residents!


A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they will never sit in.
A Greek Proverb

Friday, June 8, 2012

Volunteering all over the state of Illinois.

I attended the East Central Illinois Volunteerism Conference this week and talked a bit with Scott McFarland. Scott is the Resources and Information Manager with the Serve Illinois Commission. He told me that their Web site shows more opportunites that there are volunteers and that he needs many more people to fill those open positions. These opportunites happen all over Illinois. Here is the link for that: If you want to volunteer, bookmark this site and look at it often and there are always changes.

Please consider volunteering, not just at CCNH, but anywhere in Illinois. It is the right thing to do!

Jim Hronek, Volunteer Coordinator
Champaign County Nursing Home

If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking.
Buddhist proverb.

Friday, June 1, 2012

A good quotation:

The highest courage is to dare to be yourself in the face of adversity. Choosing responsibility over irresponsibility, ethics or convenience, and truth over popularity...these are the choices that measure your life. Travel the path of integrity without looking ack, for there is never a wrong time to do the right thing. (Author unknown)

This is the way I try to lead my life. I cannot tell you how to do your life, but please consider what is related in this quotation.

You can ask any of my relatives and they will tell you that I always advocate that a person, "Do the right thing" or "It is the right thing to do."


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

It's for the birds!

Recently, a generous person donated eight bird feeders. Different shapes, different kinds, different colors. I had some bird seed here, but I will need more as we go through the seasons. Most of the feeders are located in spots where several residents can view the action. Trees have been planted for roosting and the birds (all kinds) appear to enjoy the feeders.

We really, really need more bird seed. Consider some indirect volunteering by bring in some bird seed.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Will you donate a hose?              

Volunteers take care of the landscaping chores at CCNH. Champaign County mows the green ground cover (I hesitate to refer to it as grass, too many weeds) and that is all they do for us. Trees, shrubs and flowers have been planted all over the property and we need some long hoses so that we can water during the upcoming hot summer.

When our facility was designed, the placement of water faucets in convenient locations was a huge oversight. There are a couple of spots that will require more than 200’ of hose to reach far enough to do the watering job properly. We need hoses long enough and nozzles, too. Please consider volunteering at CCNH by donating a couple of needed items.

Thank you for your consideration.


Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth.
Muhammad Ali

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A Time Share Offer

That headline was put there to catch your attention. I hope that you will read through on this.

I am aware that there are businesses that offer an opportunity for their employees to volunteer once a month, or once a quarter during regular business hours and still get paid their regular amount.

Are you affiliated with an organization that offers this type of time sharing? Let me know if you and your co-workers are willing to come to Champaign County Nursing Home to volunteer. We can create a project that would be appropriate or you can help with many of our day-to-day activities.

Let me know.


Life isn't a matter of milestones, but of moments.
Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy

Friday, May 18, 2012

I enjoy posting on this thing, but what I cannot understand is why things end up looking as they do. For instance, notice on the previous post that the headline is small font and the body is upper case, bold, large font. That's not the way I thought I did it!


This is the time of year that I have time to do more than is necessary. My appointments a fewer and I have the opportunity to clear off my desk. But then, something new appears and I am back to a cluttered desk. I do have the time to meet new volunteers. Contact me, we'll spend some time together and you can feel better about becoming a more integral part of our community. My usual office hours are 8 - 3 Monday through Friday. Send an email, let's get something started!


We are all here for a spell; get all the good laughs you can.
Will Rogers

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Group Volunteering Help at CCNH

Groups are welcome to come to our facility. Because of what we do, groups do not have much contact with any of our residents as orientation would be required. However, I do set up some Saturday mornings throughout the year when groups can come in and help with “chores” that need to get done. These chores can be picking up trash, washing windows, scrubbing walls or a thorough cleaning of our dining rooms (shown here).

I keep the volunteer numbers somewhat low as I can work with only a certain number of at a time. If you are part of a group (fewer than 15 people), that would like to do some good for the community, then let me know. We’ll work out something.


The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.
Peter Drucker

Monday, May 14, 2012

Computer room for our residents.

Here is what we have. It is simple. Most of our residents are somewhat scared of technology and thus don’t use this room. Parkland College donated some refurbished computers and stuff. It is not state-of-the-art, but it will work for what we need here at CCNH.

However, we have some gremlins on our machines. Trojan horse, malware, whatever it is called. It is on the computers. Since these are not county-owned computers, our IT folks will not address any problems we might have. We need a volunteer who will come here, diagnose the problems and fix them. How often might this be necessary? I don’t know…possibly once every three months or longer!

Let me know if you have the skill set and some free time to help us.


Expect nothing, live frugally on surprise.
Alice Walker

Monday, May 7, 2012

Music at the Nursing Home

All kinds of music! Big Band Jazz! Bluegrass! Celtic Harp! Sing-alongs! Hymn singing! The residents enjoy the music that volunteers offer at CCNH. And, it is not all live, we play records for their enjoyment, too.

Some of the time, we use the chapel for its good acoustics. Some of the time we are in one of our dining rooms because we need the space for all of the people who come to enjoy the music.

Do you have a musical talent that you would like to share? Vocal music, instrumental music, a capella, a saw? Whatever you can do, we’ll let you share.


Life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint on it you can.
Danny Kaye

Friday, May 4, 2012

The CCNH Chapel

Our chapel is 700+ square feet. Every Friday, we have Catholic Mass. Every Sunday morning we have services with Pennsylvania Avenue Baptist Church. Every Tuesday we show a copy of Sunday's service at St. John's Lutheran Church. There is a simple Chapel Service every Sunday afternoon. Weekly, we have Bible Study.

Our residents have the right to observe whatever religious preferences they have.

Loyal volunteers are the folks who keep these events going.

Monday, April 30, 2012

What do we do at CCNH?

We take care of our community's elders. There are many people who have multiple, chronic medical conditions that require 24-hour nursing care. We have people who live here who have cardiac problems, pulmonary problems, kidney disease, Parkinson's, MS, and more. Those include having had a stroke or memory loss (dementia). About 80% of our residents are in wheelchairs and most of the rest of them use a walker to get around. With a median age of 87, we are providing the best quality of like for the old-old people.

What can you do? How can you help? Let me know what you think you can do here. Send an email. Tell me that you can do something. One hour a month is great. More hours? That is good, but not a requirement.


Tuesday, April 24, 2012


This might appear to be a conflict, but there is a local organization that needs volunteers. Empty Tomb, in Champaign, needs volunteers who will be able to commit to a four-hour shift once a week, every week. This opportunity would be helping to sort donated clothes.

Empty Tomb reaches out through their ministry to those folks who have a signifcant need to help them acquire things that they might not be able to afford to purchase. On a regular basis, we take clothes that have been donated to us. I am aware that the current group of volunteers work hard and that they can really use some more people to help.

Reach out to Empty Tomb; speak with their volunteer coordinator at 217-356-2262. You will feel good for doing this.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Volunteering for the summer.

We usually have many university students come to CCNH to help with organized activities. When they are gone, we miss their assistance. We need to have some replacement people.

This is what our needs are:

Wednesday evening Bingo at 6:30 (except the first Wednesday which is Ice Cream Social)
Saturday afternoon Bingo at 2:00 (except the last Saturday when we have a movie)
Root Beer Floats at 6:30 the last Thursday of the month
Friday afternoon's large social gathering at 2:00 (games, parties and fun)
Nail painting, most Tuesday afternoons at 2:00

Each of these opportunities will last about one hour, or a bit longer for Bingo depending on how fast the cards get filled.

If you want to help, let me know. Our activity assistants will welcome you!


The only true disability in life is a bad attitude.
Scott Hamilton

Monday, April 16, 2012

Veterans at CCNH:

There are about 16 vets who live at Champaign County Nursing Home. If you are a vet from WWII or Korea or the Vietnam era, let me know and we can set up a time for you to visit with one or more of our them. We have men and women who spend time in the U.S. Military.


Saturday, April 7, 2012

Now is the time for all good volunteers to come to the aid of CCNH!

Here is some background. When we moved into our new facility in 2007, the Champaign County Board decided that they did not want any landscaping on the property! They did not seem to care whether the residents had a decent view from the building other than the Juvenile Detention Center and the County Satellite Jail complex. Nothing at all. They didn't even plant quality grass. Their concern appears to have been the sheltering of our community's elders and not much more! Shameful.

I was ashamed to tell people that I worked here. So, I solicited money from local people, County Board Members, City Council Members, Doctors, Lawyers, Architects (you get the idea). I received zero donations to help beautify the property. Then, I asked the family members of our residents and I received thousands of dollars. 

I purchased many trees, bushes, flowers, etc. and got them planted around the building. Country Arbors planted most of the big trees and I did the rest. I spent more than $5,000 to help make the facility look better. I was criticized by Mike Scavatto, the person from St. Louis who was hired by the county board to operate the nursing home. He claimed that our priority should be the front door and the impression that visitors would get when they first approached. WRONG! 

I planted outside the windows, in the courtyards. I helped to create habitat for wildlife and I brought some beauty to the place. It is starting to look good.

This is the time of year that everything is growing on the grounds of CCNH. I need some help with the maintaining of what I have planted. I need assistance with the dividing, weeding, watering and all the things that come with keeping the place looking good. I have developed a troublesome shoulder and I cannot do it all on my own anymore.

PLEASE, help me. During the growing season, I need only an hour or two each week to keep up with things. The weather will play a big part in when this will occur. You come in as your schedule permits and the weather dictates. During the heat of summer, it might take only 30 minutes each week to check on things. Or, if it rains a lot, then the weeds will try to take over and more time will need to be done.

Send me an email. Call me. You will feel good about doing something to help the Champaign County Nursing Home residents feel that their facility looks like a home.



Friday, April 6, 2012

What’s in it for you?  It is the satisfaction that you had fun and brightened the day of one of our residents! If you have an idea that is different from what we usually do, let us know. We are always open to new ideas and suggestions. Group activities are encouraged.

Let me know, send an email:


We are each of us angels with only one wing, and can only fly embracing each other.
Titus Lucretius Carus

Monday, March 12, 2012

The overall goal of landscaping at Champaign County Nursing Home is to provide a feeling of home for its residents by providing appropriate landscape for beauty and as wildlife habitat. To achieve that goal, various plants, shrubs and tree have been installed on the property and they need to be maintained using good horticulture practices.

The education program’s goal is to have this person gain knowledge and skills in plant identification, plant and soil care, irrigation, transplanting and plant propagation, and disease and pest management.

The apprentice will:
1.      Identify common native and ornamental landscape plants.
2.      Troubleshoot pest, water, soil and location problems of landscape plants and plantings and take appropriate actions to fix the problems.
3.      Understand the botany and physiology of plants, including the growth patterns and reactions to nutrients.
4.      Identify weeds and the correct control procedures.
5.      Demonstrate thorough knowledge of horticulture tools and their care.

Anticipated time in this project will include approximately up to eight hours each month during the growing season (about April until October) as weather conditions warrant and require.

Initial supervision will be with an experience volunteer. The goal will be that the student will learn enough to continue the maintenance program and to be able to teach all of the above goals to another person.

I need help! Does this appeal to you? Let me know, we are almost into the season!


Thursday, March 8, 2012

So much fun at CCNH! Almost every day, one of the volunteers comes to my office with a huge smile. I hear many stories about spending time with one or more of our residents. One of the volunteers comes in almost every Monday morning and visits with “her” six residents. She is here for only one hour and she has been coming in for more than 10 years! You might think that she would get bored, but that is not the case. Her time here has become a habit for her. It is so good to hear her stories about what she does here.


Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.
Steve Jobs

Friday, March 2, 2012

You are considering volunteering at Champaign County Nursing Home. That is good. We welcome new volunteers. We do not require a definite number of hours here. However, we encourage you to make a commitment of at least three months and come on a regular basis. You don not have to be here for a long time, 30-minutes once a week can mean a lot to our residents. Help us with organized activities, share a talent, assist with office chores, maintain the flower beds, wash windows (we have more than 500!) or scrub the walls in the kitchen. There are many ways that you can contribute to our goal of providing a high quality-of-life for our residents.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


Life is a sum of all your choices.
Albert Camus

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Champaign County Nursing Home has a section of the building for Adult Day Care. The Sunshine Center operates Monday through Friday. The clients are those folks who would not be safe during the day while their family works. Some clients have cognition or physical deficits and others need the socialization that comes with being with people of a similar age. The Sunshine Center is a social club for our community’s elders.

We need to have caring people come here and share music or help with games or to assist with our daily schedule of events. Regularity is the key for this opportunity.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


“You can't help getting older, but you don't have to get old.” George Burns

Monday, February 20, 2012

Let me relate some of the fun things that volunteers do here. We offer arts & crafts most Friday mornings, and volunteers help with some of those projects. Our cooking creations on Tuesday mornings can be enjoyable as you help our residents prepare something that they have decided to fix. Fun is what we do. Smiling is contagious here. Upon leaving here, you will have a good feeling, knowing that you help some folks have a good life.

Send an email: take some time to do the right thing:


Life is made up of years that mean nothing and the moments that mean it all.
C.P. Snow

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Who is a volunteer? A volunteer is someone who feels a need to do good things for others.  There a many kinds of volunteers, but the people who we are seeking are those who enjoy contact with elders. When you volunteer at Champaign County Nursing Home, you are helping people maintain a sense of community. We serve the community and the community serves us.

Our mission is to provide the best quality of care that we can for those people who have multiple, chronic medical conditions and who cannot have their daily needs met in any other way. We provide a community of friendship and respect for our residents.

Please consider helping us to maintain our high quality of service.

Let me know how you want to lend a hand. Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


“You may think your actions are meaningless and that they won’t help, but that is no excuse, you must still act.”
Mohandas Gandhi

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Champaign County Nursing Home Auxiliary has been an active part of what we do since the mind 1960s. Our corps of dedicated volunteers does many things. They operate our general store, The Busy Bee. They organize our on-going Thursday morning sing-along. They come in and visit with our residents. They help with office functions. They help with placing name labels on resident’s clothes.

What makes them special is their commitment to long-term help at CCNH. There is a nominal yearly fee for dues, but meetings are not mandatory, there are no fund raisings to accomplish and no special training is necessary. The number of auxiliary members is dwindling due to attrition and we need more members. Please consider helping us help the residents.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


Life is a grindstone. Whether it grinds us down or polishes us up depends on us.
L. Thomas Holdcroft

Monday, January 30, 2012

I must tell you about how one of our residents helps us. She leads our Friday morning Bible Study! We don’t require her to do it and she does not get any compensation for doing it. But, it is her training and she enjoys the interaction she has with the other residents.

Being in a nursing home does not mean that a fulfilling life has to end. Our mission is to create a good atmosphere for those who need to be here.


Friday, January 27, 2012

Wow! You will love this opportunity! Bring your pet to CCNH. Our residents really enjoy having pets come here, large and small – bring them all.

Your pet does not have to be a certified pet. However, your pet must accept petting from strangers, be able to adjust to many strange smells and willing to accept treats without aggression. All pets must stay on leash. You will need to provide current shot record. No pets are allowed in dining areas; no pets in heat.

You will be helping with reminiscence therapy as most of our residents had pets and they enjoy sharing their experiences. Come in as you have time, but a regular appearance is strongly encouraged.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


Don’t wait for extraordinary opportunities. Seize common occasion and make them great.
Orison Swett Marden

Monday, January 23, 2012

Visiting the residents at Champaign County Nursing Home is similar to visiting your own neighbor. You stop in and chat of everyday things. You might bring a homemade treat to share (with the nurse’s permission), play games, watch TV together, talk about books and more. You set the time. You come here as your schedule permits. We do encourage regular visits as our residents need to have something to count on. You can visit with one person or several, visit randomly or work from a target list.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


If we are facing the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking.
Buddhist Proverb

Friday, January 20, 2012

We have an immediate need for a volunteer come in to CCNH on a regular-schedule, weekly basis. This must be a long-term commitment.

We label resident’s clothes with their name, in an attempt to reduce the number of lost items. We create the labels on site and we use a heated press to affix them on the clothing. This opportunity is for morning hours only. You can come here any day except Monday. There will be times when the work will require as many as three hours and other times it will be less than 30 minutes.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


What a wonderful life I’ve had! I only wish I’d realized it sooner.” Colette, French writer.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

When you volunteer at Champaign County Nursing Home, you provide many things that add to the quality of life of our residents. Thank you for considering CCNH.

Do you have musical talent? There are opportunites for you to share that talent. The first Wednesday of every month, we have an Ice Cream Social that begins at 6:45 p.m. The last Thursday of every month, we have Root Beer Floats that begins at 6:45 p.m. Both take place in our East Dining Room and the program should be less than 45 minutes. There is a piano there for your use.

If you would like to offer music for dinner time (our piano or your own instrument or voice), you can come in anytime after 4:30 p.m. You can share your music for as long as you have people there to appreciate it.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


“I was born with music inside me. Music was one of my parts. Like my ribs, my kidneys, my liver, my heart. Like my blood. It was a force already within me when I arrived on the scene. It was a necessity for me-like food or water.” Ray Charles

Friday, January 13, 2012

Champaign County Nursing Home started in 1953. CCNH consists of 243 beds and licensed by the State of Illinois to provide skilled and intermediate care. We provide skilled therapy services that include occupational, physical and speech therapy. There is a separate neighborhood for individuals with memory loss. We have a beauty shop, computer lab and a full schedule of organized activities.

This blog is to inform the public and family members about CCNH and volunteer opportunities.
I will list and revise regularly some volunteer opportunites that need filled.

All volunteers are required to complete an information sheet, sign a confidentiality form and have an interview with the volunteer coordinator; and take a tour of our facility. Appointments are required for this one-hour first visit. An adult must accompany children who are younger than 12 at all times.

High on our list of needs is visiting with our residents. We encourage volunteers to come and be a good neighbor. You can visit, take walks, play games and become a friend. One of the great things about visits like this is that you come in as your schedule permits.

Send an email; take some time to do the right thing:


“Conviction is worthless unless it is converted into conduct.”  Lord Byron