Tyson Cowles

Daily Point of Light # 3675 Mar 5, 2008

Volunteering since he was 13, Tyson, “Ty,” originally worked in the commercial kitchen where he learned about Hospice. As he entered high school, Ty's growing commitment to service pushed him into venturing into the patient kitchen, then into patients' rooms. Ty now spends 3 nights a week after school holding the hands of the dying patients and conversing with their loved ones. He has the gift of presence, a skill which allows him to be with the patient and family, mind, body and soul. Tyson also brings his guitar to quietly play for those families who enjoy the soothing sounds of his music. Ty was a featured performer at the Hospice of Volusia Flagler’s inaugural variety show, a fund raiser where he performed a solo and played guitar. The charge nurse in the evenings considers Ty an integral part of the team that works in the care center at night, often calling him to visit a particular patient that needs the comfort of his presence. Ty's caring spirit has certainly impacted many of the patients' lives. His gentle way and listening ear provides much needed support at this pivotal time. His work with the homeless provides them a compassionate environment on a cold night.

Because he has a deeply rooted interest in helping the sick and also because his goal is to do medical missions work, Ty is committed to volunteering in a profound manner. In addition to his wonderful work at the Hospice, by the age of 17 Ty has already compiled an impressive volunteer record. During the summer of 2005, he went on a volunteer trip to help build a school in Costa Rica. In 2006 he went on a medical mission to Guyana and in December 06 he spent three weeks on a medical mission to Africa, where he worked in AIDS clinics and AIDS orphanages. He regularly volunteers for Halifax Urban Ministries' "Room at the Inn" providing food and shelter for the homeless on cold nights, often spending the entire night as his school schedule allows. He is president of his church's youth group and president of the GFA (God First Always) club at Spruce Creek High School.

Ty has an impressive volunteer resume, but it is made even more impressive because of his young age. As other teens shop the mall and worry about material possessions, Ty is focused on helping others, especially those facing the end of life. Ty's goal is to become a registered nurse so that he can continue to do medical missions. Ty has a caring spirit and commitment to service, and his willingness to do the tough jobs.