DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. -- Jackie White was in a department store when she noticed a table for set-up for a local hospice facility.
She went over and was asked about becoming a volunteer.
She told the representative she needed time to pray about it.
”I didn't know whether I could handle it at the end or not because I get attached to people so easily,” she said.
That was 21 years ago.
Since then, White has become the longest-serving volunteer at Hospice of Davidson County.
“God has helped me and it actually has made me a stronger person. I think I can hold up under a lot of things now, that maybe I once couldn't,” she said.
“For someone to give of their time freely for 21 years is incredible. Our patients and families just adore her, the staff adore her. She's iconic around here,” said Rebecca Sink, volunteer team leader at Hospice of Davidson County.
White takes on two patients at a time and serves them where they are – whether that’s at their home or at the patient center in Lexington.
Volunteers are asked to donate at least an hour of their time, but Jackie usually stays much longer.
“I always tell my patients and the family that I will stay as long as they need me. I try to work it out that I can do that. It’s seldom I ever stay one hour. Most of the time I'm there three and sometimes more,” she said.
“I know that these people really need help and there at the end it's a hard time for them, and I just feel like it blesses me to feel like I'm there blessing them.”
At 82 years old, White looks forward to serving families for many years to come.
Hospice of Davidson County is accepting applications for volunteers.
It’s holding orientation and training sessions this month.
The deadline to apply and register is Feb. 12.
Call (336) 475-5444 or visit hospiceofdavidson.org/volunteer to express an interest in volunteering.