United Way #8365 | CFC #42512


All Hospice Caring volunteers who work directly with clients in our Patient and Family, Adult Bereavement, and Children’s Bereavement programs are required to take our Volunteer Training. All training is held at the Hospice Caring Cottage.

Our general volunteer training will be held four times during the year.  The dates for 2016 are:

  • March 8, 9, 10 2016
  • May 10,11,12, 14 2016*
  • September 13, 14, 15, 2016
  • November 15, 16, 17, 2016

*Our May training will be held at Kensington Park Senior Living

Volunteer Training

Volunteers are the heart of Hospice Caring. In order to responsibly serve patients and the bereaved, every volunteer who works directly with clients must complete a three-day (8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) introductory training session, which is often described by graduates as a transforming experience. The training provides information about the many aspects of the dying process and the various non-medical ways to assist the dying through their end-of-life journey. Through lectures, guided exercises and role playing, staff and professionals present a broad range of information and skill-building instruction to new volunteers that prepares them to be one-on-one caregivers and bereavement facilitators. The training includes topics such as hospice care, death and dying, grief, communication, appreciating diversity, nursing homes, funeral homes, legal documents, Hospice Caring’s caregiving and bereavement programs, and volunteer self-care and responsibilities.

Registration: To register, please contact Penny Gladhill at pennyg@hospicecaring.org or 301-990-8904

Prerequisites: All potential volunteers (caregivers and group facilitators) who work directly with clients undergo a background check.

Student feedback about Volunteer Training

"This training far exceeded my expectations in terms of what I learned, the staff and volunteers I met and my classmates. We have not even started our volunteering, but I already feel part of a warm, warm family. Thank you for this wonderfully amazing experience!" "I found that the training was done in the spirit of the patient first. This touched my heart and nothing better could be said. Thank you." "I used to be a training coordinator for a for-profit training organization...All I can say is this training has been the best that I have ever had contact with. Very professional, informative and entertaining. Don't change a thing!"

Adult Bereavement Facilitator Training

Our Adult Bereavement Facilitator Training prepares volunteers to co-facilitate our peer support groups for adults who are grieving the death of a loved one. Topics covered include grief-related issues, group dynamics, communication skills, and facilitation skills.

Schedule: Training is offered once or twice a year, as needed. Training is held on a Saturday and two weekday evenings.

Prerequisite: 3-day Volunteer Training plus a completed background check

Student feedback about Adult Bereavement Facilitator Training

"The information was very thorough and allowed for a lot of thoughtful and insightful discussions." "We all got to know each other, got to explore our own grief, and were able to see how you lead groups and get everyone engaged in the conversation." "Materials were first-rate; time was well-structured and enjoyable; flowed well."

Good Grief Club Facilitator Training

This training prepares volunteers for co-facilitating our 7-week Good Grief Clubs in Montgomery County schools during school hours with a school counselor. Topics covered include children’s ways of grieving, an agenda for each weekly session, a myriad of tools to help children in grades K-12, and information about working within the school system.

Schedule: Training is offered once or twice a year, as needed. Training is held on weekdays.

Prerequisite: 3-day Volunteer Training plus a completed background check

Student feedback about Good Grief Club Facilitator Training

“The training was so thorough. I feel privileged to have taken part in it.” “Great speakers panel. Listening to them tell their stories was extremely helpful.” “I feel prepared to be a Good Grief Club facilitator, and I’m secure in the knowledge that if I need help or have questions there are people to go to.”

Camp Caring Training

This training prepares volunteers for the 3-day camp for grieving children.  It is held on a Saturday, 2 - 3 weeks before the camp weekend.  Topics include children's ways of grieving, behaviors one might expect, and our goals in providing this experience.

Schedule:  Training is offered once a year, on a Saturday.  Our next training will be May 21, 2016.

Prerequisite:  Minimum age of 21 plus a completed background check.

Frequently Asked Questions About Training

Here we address questions about Hospice Caring’s training programs. If you have other questions, please contact Hospice Caring.

1. Are administrative and event volunteers required to take Volunteer Training? Will they still undergo a background check even if they don’t take Volunteer Training?

Administrative and event volunteers are not required to take the three-day Volunteer Training. The Volunteer Training is for “program” volunteers (caregivers and bereavement facilitators).

2. Do any of Hospice Caring’s training programs satisfy professional counseling or medical career field criteria for accreditation or continuing education units (CEUs)? Does Hospice Caring train professional hospice caregivers and bereavement facilitators in the various medical and social services career fields if they reimburse Hospice Caring for the cost of the training?

We have qualified and professional speakers at our training, and we meet the requirements of the State’s “Limited License Hospice” training.  We provide ongoing supervision, guidance, support and continuing education for our volunteers. They are invited to attend monthly meetings (caregiver support and bereavement support), a book club, and social gatherings. Volunteers are kept informed through newsletters, e-mails, and mailings. But it would not satisfy educational or professional credits because we are not medical.

3. I have already been trained by another hospice organization to be a volunteer caregiver and bereavement facilitator. Will my training transfer to Hospice Caring as a substitute for the Volunteer Training at Hospice Caring?

No. We are a unique hospice, and our training reflects our particular mission.

Training Location

Hospice Caring’s training is held at the Cottage in our resource room, the wing of the Cottage dedicated “Joshua’s Place at Hospice Caring: A Resource for Life™.” This peaceful, bright room is equipped with a refrigerator and microwave that students may use. Ample parking is available at the Cottage.