St. Augustine Community Thanks Volunteers - St. Augustine Health Ministries

Cleveland, OH, April 12, 2019– St. Augustine Health Campus, located on the western edge of the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood of Cleveland, welcomed nearly 100 volunteers, guests and staff to its annual Volunteer Appreciation luncheon on Sunday, April 7th.  The event celebrated the generosity of individuals committed to the mission of the health ministries and recognizes milestones achieved by select volunteers. 

Laura Champa, Volunteer of the Year

Among those honored were Laura Champa, Volunteer of the Year for 2018, an honor that dates back to the inception of St. Augustine’s volunteer program in 1970.   This award is given to individuals who exemplify devotion, commitment, love, compassion and concern for others — the residents, other volunteers, and staff.  “Laura is a volunteer who has gone beyond our expectations and also embodies our mission to continue the healing ministry of Christ,” offered Anita Gerrasch, Administrator.  “As a Clerical Assistant, Resident Escort and Personal Shopper, she engages with residents and staff at our skilled care and assisted living facilities at the Health Campus.”  Laura is an employee of the Cleveland Clinic and resides in Lakewood with her husband, Steve.

Volunteers celebrating service milestones include:  Marilyn Kuczynski (25 years), Charles Tuma, Marie McCarthy, Robert Wanous and Mary Clark (20 years), and Jean Campana and Michael Harvan (15 years). 

Robert Clark of Cleveland was recognized for over 15,000 lifetime service hours. Volunteers honored for 5,000 lifetime service hours included Mary Ann Basista and Joseph Stavole, both of Parma Heights and Lindsey Tehorik of Cleveland.  Joseph Curtis, celebrating his 96th birthday, was recognized for over 49 years of service to the St. Augustine Health Campus.

Outstanding Service awards were presented to: Diane Lekan of North Olmsted, (Eucharistic Minister and Transporter); Crystal Medley of Brookpark (Mail Clerk); Patricia Piatak of Parma (Chapel Assistant, Organist); and Rachel Pestak (Floor Assistant) and Charles Tuma (Older Adult Meals Assistant), both of Cleveland.

In 2018, over 23,000 hours of service were provided by more than 200 volunteers who serve St. Augustine Health Ministries, which includes the St. Augustine Health Campus and Holy Family Home Health Care & Hospice.

St. Augustine Health Ministries is a mission-driven, faith-based, not-for-profit organization founded by Catholic Charities, Diocese of Cleveland, dedicated to providing a continuum of health care and social services within our community, primarily to the chronically ill and aging. Throughout the Health Ministries, we ensure that the needs of every individual are met with dignity, comfort and love.

For more information about volunteer opportunities, please contact Mary Gagen, Volunteer Manager at 216-939-7601