Redesigning Volunteer Intervention Practices in Oncology and Volunteering 3.0
About this good practice
Ordinary activities of LILT volunteers.
Assistance to patients and their families. LILT provides financial subsidies, food package delivery, payment of utility bills and services of accompaniment to hospitals. Care Services - "At Home, Away from Home" Network. LILT provides foster homes free of charge for patients and their families coming from other Italian regions.
Patient engagement activities before the pandemic.
"Animation Group" in which volunteers organized gatherings with patients. "ArtLab" an art workshop for all patients, former patients and family members, in order to regain their well-being and quality of life.
Patient engagement activities at the beginning of the pandemic.
Volunteering 3.0 project for reorganizing the reception and support of patients. The project started with a survey, aimed at identifying patients' needs. Based on the results of the survey, the following services were introduced: Information and guidance services; Information about cancer patients’ rights; Implementation of volunteer home activities.
Patient engagement activities during the pandemic.
Following the first reopening (June 2020), activities gradually resumed. Among them, courses supported by volunteers, such as: “Corpo e Mente ArtLab” (an Art Workshop). “Mi prendo Cura di me” (a Training course on motor activity, good eating habits). “I Corretti Stili di Vita” (a pathway for everyone focusing on primary prevention and healthy lifestyle).
Evidence of success
The good practices implemented by LILT were made possible through the active employment of LILT volunteers: this led to positive effects for cancer patients, both in treatment and in the post-therapy period. Although the period of the first Lockdown in 2020 brought serious consequences to patients, LILT was able to reorganize its initiatives with the help of new digital tools and remote delivery modes, rethinking and reorganizing spaces and redefining the role of volunteers in this new scenario
Potential for learning or transfer
The lessons learned could be identified as follows:
- Provision of financial subsidies, food package delivery, payment of utility bills services of accompaniment to hospitals for patients with economic hardship.
- Providing homes free of charge for patients who come from other Italian regions.
- Engaging cancer patients and those undergoing treatment at hospitals through Workshops and/or recreational activities to improve their quality of life.
- Reorganizing the reception and care of patients.
- Reorganizing the volunteers’ activities during the lockdown.