Kay’s volunteer work truly makes a difference for patients, families and professionals who encounter her, as she understands that anxiety reduction is a key to helping people. She uses her skills and experience as an internationally recognized elementary education professor to provide comfort and support to patients and families of all ages. A role model volunteer, Dr. Stickle began her second career, volunteering for Cardinal Health System in 1988, while working as a professor for the reading program and elementary education department for Ball State University and serving as faculty for the Professional Development program at Cowan Schools in Cowan, Indiana. She often popped over to fill in for the flower delivery service program and began knitting baby hats and booties for newborn infants at Ball Memorial Hospital as part of the Operation CoverUp, a program focused at helping new mothers understand how quickly newborns lose body heat when they have nothing covering the baby’s head, volunteers quickly spear-headed this project. To date Kay has reached milestone hours with 8,617 lifetime hours of service. Since July 1 of this year, Kay had donated more than 660 hours to benefit the many services rendered to the hospital and patients at Cardinal Health System.
In addition to comforting others, Kay is always willing to assist in promotion of the CHS volunteer program, and in recruitment efforts. She assists in training incoming ED volunteer candidates, and always represents CHS positively in her daily activities and interactions with members of the community. With a background in professional speaking, Kay is always willing to serve as a volunteer speaker when many non for profit agencies are in need.
Kay also added to her volunteering activities by becoming a Cuddler in the NICU. She comes once a week or more often as we need her to, to hold the infants that we have in our unit in need of her special touch. She also always has a wonderful story to tell the staff that can often lighten the load of our busy day. She softly sings or tells stories to our infants. She even arrived on the morning after our large snow storm ready to do whatever we needed her to do. “Kay is a great addition to our team,” said Donna Wilcox, NICU nurse manager.