Virtual volunteer lounge

Greetings from Unity Health Toronto and welcome to the virtual volunteer lounge! We have created this online space to keep our absent volunteers engaged and informed. Please explore and check back for new content!

COVID-19 Updates from Unity Health

Get the latest COVID-19 information for the three Unity Health sites, including visitor guidelines and the current state of COVID cases.

See inside some changes at St. Michael’s (PDF file) –  a special photo tour of some changes at Unity Health. Note: the photos are from St. Michael’s, but all three sites have set up screening stations at their entrances.

See a list of health-related supports available through the City of Toronto  – a list of community resources for everyone to access during this time.

Ballons (clipart)Virtual Volunteer Appreciation Week

Unity Health is known for its’ compassion and caring and our volunteers are an important part of that reputation.  And volunteer week is traditionally the time when we take time to really celebrate your special contribution to our patients and families. We cannot all be together at this special time this year, but we can all celebrate the power of volunteering!

Happy Volunteer Week 2020!!!

A Special Volunteer Week Message from our CEO, Tim Rutledge

Dear Unity Health Toronto Volunteers,

These are extraordinarily challenging times, and we are all doing our best to keep our communities safe. For all of us who work in health-care settings, we are being called upon like never before. Our communities are counting on us to care for them and their loved ones, and to be at our best during this time of crisis.  Through all of this, it’s been so inspiring to see staff and physicians continue to keep Unity Health Toronto’s mission at the forefront, by continuing to care for the mind, body and spirit of everyone who comes to us in need.

We must also remember to take time to reflect and celebrate what makes Unity Health such a special place. This is National Volunteer Week across Canada.  I thought it would be fitting to take a moment to connect with you because of what our volunteers mean to us and how you all best exemplify our legacy of compassion and courage.  Although we have had to cancel our volunteer appreciation events this month and I will therefore be unable to thank you in person, I want you to know that we are thinking of you. Your absence may have even served to make us even more appreciative of your service.  We miss having you here alongside us and we very much look forward to your return.

Best wishes during this “virtual” volunteer week!

Yours sincerely,

Tim Rutledge
President and Chief Executive Officer

Special thanks from our staff to you (pdf file)

“Absence makes the heart grow fonder”, and we know this is true because of how much we all miss having our volunteers alongside us.

Volunteering: The Year in Numbers

2019-20 saw another year of amazing dedication by our Unity Health volunteers:

Volunteers: the year in numbers graphic

Text version of infographic

Celebrating the volunteers of Unity Health Toronto

1439 volunteers serve within Unity Health Toronto

  • 908 adults
  • 368 students
  • 148 co-op students
  • 15 therapy dogs

Across the network, volunteers donated 144,238 hours of service to our patients, residents and supporters.

In 2020, 282 volunteers will be recognized for reaching a service milestone (hours or years of service.)

Who do volunteers serve? (by percentage of volunteer time)

  • Inpatients/HoP residents: 28%
  • Outpatients/clinics: 20%
  • Visitors/families/greeting: 21%
  • Gift shop/café: 16%
  • Specialized services: 15%


100 Years of Volunteering at St. Michael’s (photo album) (pdf file)

2020 marks 100 years of volunteering at our St. Michael’s site. Click on the link above to take a walk through history as we look back!

Keeping in Touch

We know that we miss you, and we hope that you miss us too!  Here are a few additional ways to stay connected to us while you are not here.

Send a note of encouragement and support to our staff

Click on the link above to send a kindness card!  They will be printed and forwarded to the staff, unit or team you wish to recognize. (To fill out card, open using Internet Explorer, or download card and open with Adobe Acrobat Reader.)

Join us in keeping our staff and patients in your prayers

In our Mission Statement, one of the things Unity Health commits to is providing compassion spiritual care to all in need.  And we recognize that during this extraordinary time that ‘those in need’ would include our staff and physicians.

And so, members of the Unity Health Spiritual Care team are devoting one minute daily (at 12 noon) in silent prayer for everyone at Unity Health for the duration of this pandemic.  We invite all of our Unity Health community, including our absent volunteers, to join us, in their own faith tradition or in whatever way they may find comfortable.

Sample language:

We pray for all victims of the coronavirus, their loved ones, and all health care workers and first responders tasked with the treatment and care of those who are ill. 

 You who are Comfort, be with all those who are ill, afraid, or in isolation.

In their loneliness, be their consolation.

In their anxiety, be their hope.

In their darkness, be their light.

Fill our hearts with Compassion that we might care for ourselves and for others in ways that bring goodness and connection in the midst of distance.

Grant your wisdom and grace in each moment.   [Amen]

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