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Oswego County Launches Recognition Program During National Volunteer Month

OSWEGO COUNTY – April is recognized as National Volunteer Month and communities across the U.S. are taking another opportunity to thank people for their sacrifice and endurance.

 “I’ve said this before,” said Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang. “Public health is not a ‘9-to-5’ job, and we simply could not do all that we have been able to without the generosity of time and effort from our volunteers. For the last year, they have joined us to answer calls to the phone bank, conduct contact tracing and other office tasks, work the many vaccination and testing clinics we’ve held, and donated homemade masks for the community. Without them, these critical operations would not run as smoothly as they have.”

Oswego County is launching a “Volunteer of the Week” program to recognize these unsung heroes.

“We’ve been thinking for some time about how to best honor our volunteers for all of their hard work,” said Danielle Carlone, public health sanitarian for the Oswego County Health Department. “This program is a great way to shine a light on them and recognize their talent and service.”

The program’s first “Volunteer of the Week” is Paul King, an EMT and a member of the Altmar Volunteer Fire Department.

After hearing the call for volunteers from the Oswego County Health Department, King stepped up and trained to administer vaccines. He has participated in mass vaccination clinics throughout the county including those at G. Ray Bodley High School in Fulton and the Tailwater Lodge in Altmar.

When asked about his volunteer experience, Paul stated, “Everyone is always very nice, very efficient, and there are always compliments on how effective the clinics are. It just makes you feel good.”

King is eager to lend a hand to the community he lives in. “I like helping out and it doesn’t matter where, because I’m here for the community,” he said.

The Oswego County Health Department is thankful for the many generous and talented volunteers that have come out to prove that we are all in this together.

The Oswego County Health Department continues to recruit both medical and non-medical volunteers for upcoming COVID-19 vaccination and testing clinics.

Non-medical volunteers are needed to register and screen people who are being vaccinated, manage flow control, and help with other activities. People with a medical background can help with COVID-19 vaccinations and testing. They can monitor patients and provide emergency medical assistance.

“A mass vaccination clinic is a big undertaking, and we rely on support from many volunteers and partner agencies in addition to our own Health Department staff,” said Huang. “The clinics have been running very smoothly, but we can always use more people to help with the many steps required to deliver the vaccine.”

Those interested are asked to fill out a form on the county’s COVID-19 page and provide information about their availability, areas of interest and related information. Those with a medical background must also provide information about their medical license or CPR certification availability.

The application form is posted on the health department’s COVID – 19 page at https://health.oswegocounty.com/information/2019_novel_coronavirus/medical_volunteering.php

For more information, go to the Oswego County Health Department’s COVID-19 page at health.oswegocounty.com/covid-19 or call its COVID-19 hotline at 315-349-3330. Phone lines are open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. For information about emotional supports, visit the Oswego County Department of Social Services Division of Mental Hygiene at www.oswegocounty.com/mentalhygiene.  

Under New York State Public Health Law, the Oswego County Health Department is the local public health authority regarding the COVID-19 pandemic response within the County of Oswego. The Oswego County Health Department works closely with New York State Department of Health regarding COVID-19 monitoring, response, and reporting.

Paul King vaccinating OCHD

PAUL KING IS ‘VOLUNTEER OF THE WEEK’ – The Oswego County Health Department launches a “Volunteer of the Week” program to recognize those who have volunteered to help our community through the COVID-19 pandemic. Paul King, an EMT and member of the Altmar Volunteer Fire Department, is the program’s first honoree. He is pictured here administering a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in one of the first clinics held by the Oswego County Health Department.