Rogers gives hours to hospital

Published 8:49 pm Thursday, April 28, 2016

 Vaughan Regional Medical Center Auxiliary volunteer Billie Rogers shows off the cards and candy cups that she makes for hospital patients.

Vaughan Regional Medical Center Auxiliary volunteer Billie Rogers shows off the cards and candy cups that she makes for hospital patients.

Selma resident Billie Rogers has clocked in more than 10,000 volunteer hours as a hospital auxiliary member over the past 33 years.

Her volunteering began at the old Vaughan hospital, once located on Dallas Avenue, six months after the auxiliary was established in the hospital as project manager. Over the years, her roles within the auxiliary have changed. She has served as district three chairman for the state board, gift shop state chairman, local auxiliary vice president, local auxiliary president and more.

Now she volunteers at Vaughan Regional Medical Center once a week. She makes candy cups for the gift shop, greeting cards for patients’ lunches and manages the front desk.

“It’s very rewarding. It’s a pleasure to be here and you really feel like you are doing something worthwhile,” Rogers said.

As a mother of two boys, she was busy with boy scouts and sports. She said as her sons grew up, she found herself needing something to occupy her time and especially so after her late husband, Bill, passed away in 1990.Although she volunteers once a week at the hospital currently, there have been periods she volunteered on a daily basis.

“When I was gift shop manager, I was here every day,” Rogers said.

She no longer manages the shop, but still contributes to its sales by making candy cups.

“We just take a simple plastic punch cup and put some kind of candy in it, wrap it attractively and sell it for $2. It makes a really neat, inexpensive gift to take to patients,” Rogers said.

The candy cups are filled with various candies such as chocolates or mints. They are sold at the hospital gift shop. Revenue made by the auxiliary members at the shop goes toward the group’s projects. This year, the auxiliary renovated a space in the hospital into a mother’s lounge, a space for employees who are also new mothers to pump milk.

Rogers sets aside 10 hours every month to make cards for patients’ lunch trays.

“I really enjoy doing those,” she said.

The cards vary in color and embellishment. Many of them are inspired by monthly holidays with hearts, flags or Easter eggs. Others are created to bring joy on a more average day.

In 2014, the cards won second place in a state competition within the auxiliary’s organization, Alabama Council of Hospital Auxiliaries.

She said her favorite things about volunteering are being around people and making crafts for the patients.

“That’s what I do.” She said. “I enjoy doing these things. It makes the patients feel good.”