Volunteer Programs

Auxiliary Volunteer Programs

The Dartmouth General Hospital Auxiliary, with approximately 134 members, provides between 14,000 and 17,000 hours of volunteer service each year to the Dartmouth General Hospital. Through its volunteer efforts, the DGH Auxiliary raises funds to purchase essential hospital equipment and to deliver non-medical services. The Auxiliary encourages teenage volunteers, provides opportunity for members to participate in educational programs and conferences, works to promote good relations between the hospital and the community and works primarily to benefit our patients, their families, the hospital and staff. It also maintains liaison with other Auxiliaries across Nova Scotia through the Nova Scotia Association of Health Auxiliaries (NSAHA).

The Corner Gift Shop

The Dartmouth General Hospital Auxiliary operates the Corner Gift Shop located at the first floor lobby entrance of the Hospital at the 325 Pleasant Street. The Corner Gift Shop offers a large selection of items, including flowers, giftware, plush toys, newspapers, books, magazines, beverages, postage stamps, candy and toiletries. Volunteer Gift Shop positions include: the chairperson, a scheduler, a bookkeeper, a giftware buyer and two assistant buyers and a candy buyer.

The Gift Shop Cart

For those patients and family members who are unable to visit the Gift Shop, Auxiliary volunteers operate a Gift Shop Cart, which makes regular visits to the patient rooms and rest areas within the Hospital. The cart carries a wide variety of personal hygiene items, newspapers, magazines and many confectionery items.

Information Desks

The Dartmouth General Hospital Auxiliary volunteers staff two Information Desks in the Dartmouth General Hospital. One is located in the front lobby of the Hospital entrance at 325 Pleasant Street; the second in the lobby of the Dartmouth General Hospital's Emergency Department. The Information Desk volunteers provide information on Hospital services provided and direct the patient or family members to patient rooms and the appropriate Emergency areas within the Hospital.

Menu Delivery Program

Auxiliary volunteers provide a menu delivery program throughout the Hospital. Volunteers deliver the menus daily. Occasionally, some patients may require assistance to complete their menu at the time of menu delivery. This is up to the discretion of the volunteer. Patients who require assistance marking menus can also be identified by the Dietetic Technician.

Night Lunches

Auxiliary volunteers coordinate the delivery of night lunches to the Hospital patients after normal meal hours.

Friendly Visitor Volunteers

Dartmouth General Hospital receives a number of requests from hospital staff and family members of patients who would benefit from a friendly visit of a volunteer.  The hospital staff can also be aware of patients who would benefit from a friendly visit of a volunteer.  The ages of the patients, their condition, care needs and length of stay will be a determining factor for the Charge Nurse as they assign the patients to the volunteer.

The volunteer will visit with patients to provide socialization, companionship and comfort during their hospital stay. They will engage patients in activities as appropriate, such as playing cards, other games, reading aloud, or other activities of interest to the patient. They may also accompany patients on a walk on the floor as deemed appropriate by the patient’s nurse.

Diagnostic Imaging

Diagnostic Imaging is an ever changing, diversified field within the health care system structure. High School Cooperative students will be introduced to the field of Radiology by volunteering in the Diagnostic Imaging Department. They will have the opportunity to observe and interact with the health care team and patients in general imaging, emergency and mobile x-ray, the operating room and CT scanner locations. They will interact with patients in the waiting areas, accompany patients to areas within the Diagnostic Imaging, observe imaging procedures with patient permission and assist technologist with paperwork and computer work as required.

Pre-Admission Clinic/Day Surgery

The Endoscopy and Surgery suite is also an ever changing, diversified field within the health care structure. Volunteers may have the opportunity to observe and interact with the health care team and patients waiting for surgery or endoscopic procedures. They will accompany patients to areas within the Endoscopic or Surgical suite area. Show patients where to meet the nursing or clerical staff. Provide support and interact with patients in the clinic waiting area and collaborate with clinic staff, seeking assistance when needed.


Auxiliary volunteers staff the DGH medical library on the first floor of the Hospital. The volunteers provide a reading library and a source for computerized health care research assistance for the hospital doctors and staff.

Junior Volunteers

The Auxiliary coordinates the advertisement, recruitment, interviewing and selection schedule for new Junior Volunteers. New Junior Volunteers are placed in the most appropriate areas in the Hospital.

Memorial Bursary

Each year, the Auxiliary accepts nominations from several local high schools for nominations for a Memorial Bursary of $1,500.00 to be awarded each year to a deserving student entering a university science program leading to the medical profession.


All DGH Auxiliary volunteers are required to maintain the confidentiality of any information obtained while performing their volunteer role.  This includes all information about patients, families, employees, medical staff and fellow volunteers.