Journey Home Singers
“You don’t know the gift you are giving”
The Journey Home singers of Cooley Dickinson have been bringing songs of peace and comfort to our hospice and hospital patients since 2011. Comprised of approximately 30 volunteer members, we travel in small, four-part a cappella groups throughout the Pioneer Valley to bring moments of joy to families, and help make our patients’ end-of-life transitions as comfortable and respectful as possible.
Specially trained in the art of singing for hospice and hospital patients, we tailor our selections to patients’ musical preferences, and to their physical and spiritual needs. We sing for hospice patients in their homes and in skilled nursing facilities, as well as to patients at Cooley Dickinson Hospital. Our singers are trained in the hospice approach to care, confidentiality and conduct.
What to Expect at a Sing
When we are invited to sing for a patient, we typically visit in groups of 4-8 singers. Family, friends and caregivers are all welcome. Songs are selected after a brief phone conversation to determine what would best fit our patients’ needs.
Our musical repertoire includes sacred music from different traditions, spirituals, lullabies, hospice music, a few golden oldies and songs in other languages. Our singers blend gently to provide as peaceful and uplifting an experience as possible.
Volunteering with Journey Home
If you are interested in joining Journey Home, you are welcomed to visit our practices to learn more about our approach. Sensitivity to the sacred time preceding death, musical ability, and availability to come when needed are necessary components for any singing volunteer. Acceptance of new members is based on our needs for particular voice parts and a person’s ability to sing in tune and hold their own part with other parts. Singers who sing at bedside must be certified. Once certified, you will receive access to an official practice book and a Hospice badge. The path to certification includes:
- Attending some practice sessions
- Interviewing/auditioning with music directors
- Filling out application (link below)
- Attending a training session with the Hospice Volunteer Coordinator and complete paperwork
- Obtaining a health screening at the hospital for TB screening, immunization records and proof of flu shot
- Making a one-year commitment to the group with an expectation of rehearsing twice per month and participating in at least one sing per month
How to Apply
Click here to fill out the Journey Home Singers Application form
For more information on joining or to request a hospice sing for your loved one, please contact our Hospice Volunteer Coordinator Tina Leflar at 413-584-1060 or by email at email@example.com.
Thank you for your interest in the Journey Home singers. We look forward to talking with you!