RMHC Toronto volunteer, Alyssa, says supporting families who use our Family Room at Health Sciences North (HSN) in Sudbury has given her many special moments since she started volunteering in September 2018.

Family Rooms provide family members with a comfortable place to rest, have a snack, or enjoy the comfort of a cup of tea or coffee while staying close to their child in the hospital. Our Family Room at HSN supports families with children in the Paediatrics and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.

Over the past two years, Alyssa is one of the many RMHC Toronto volunteers who have shown great dedication to family members who rely on our Family Rooms for safety and comfort, now more than ever. These volunteers have adjusted to ever-changing health and safety policies and temporary shift suspensions to protect the vulnerable community we serve.

Volunteering throughout the pandemic has been a different experience, but I’m so glad I’m still able to support families who need it most


During her time as a volunteer, every interaction with a family has been special to Alyssa, but some moments have really shown how her work in the Family Room makes a difference.

“I had many conversations with a mother who frequently used the laundry in the Family Room. After a few weeks, she told me how much she appreciated being able to wash her clothes because her family flew to Sudbury with little notice. This is one of the many moments that gave me perspective on what these families are going through and why the Family Room is so important.”

Helping family members feel safe and supported while they’re in the Family Room wouldn’t be possible without incredible volunteers like Alyssa. And, she says she has gained so much from the experience, too.

“Bringing some light to a family’s hospital experience is such a great reward and is an experience I don’t take for granted. I feel lucky to be able to make a difference in someone’s day, even if it’s in the smallest way possible.”

Thank you, Alyssa, and to our other amazing Family Room volunteers for your empathy and compassion for families with seriously ill children.

During National Volunteer Week we are celebrating everyone who gives their time to RMHC Toronto. From our family to yours, thank you!

Interested in getting involved? Learn more about volunteering at RMHC Toronto.