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When Chris Bragg was a patient at Sheltering Arms in September 2009, he had no idea that it was just the beginning of something much bigger “When I first came to Sheltering Arms after my stroke, I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t swallow,” says Bragg.
He was so grateful for the progress he made in his physical, occupational and speech therapy at Sheltering Arms Hospital and in his subsequent outpatient therapy.
When he needed rehabilitation a few years later following a heart attack and open heart surgery, the choice was obvious to him. He came back to Sheltering Arms.
“They treated me so well and I really felt good about myself. In my heart, I wanted to give back,” he adds.
Mr. Bragg certainly gives back to Sheltering Arms these days, volunteering his time every Tuesday and Thursday. He has been dubbed the ‘Director of First Impressions’ for the way he warmly greets patients and visitors at the front desk of the hospital. He also visits with patients, offering encouragement from someone who has been in their shoes.
“It doesn’t take a whole lot to make someone smile. It’s a good feeling to give,” he summarizes with a smile.
Sheltering Arms was founded by Rebekah Peterkin and a group of volunteers in 1889 and was run by volunteers for several years. Volunteers remain an important part of our daily operations today. In fact, last year a total of 91 volunteers donated more than 4,120 hours of their time throughout the Sheltering Arms programs, services and locations. In honor of National Volunteer Week, we salute Chris and all of the dedicated Sheltering Arms volunteers!