The roots of the GMH Volunteers Association - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

The roots of the GMH Volunteers Association

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Guam Memorial Hospital Volunteers Association member Ann Muna may not be a founding member, but she might as well be. "I was an employee of the hospital when they first started the volunteers," she recalled.

Muna was the public information officer of GMH at the time when the volunteers organization was first created, being was the group's point of contact. "I started as a coordinator for the volunteers to help them to set up things since they were very new at the time," she added. Decades later, she never left GMH. Muna said, "I guess I was married to the hospital since 1958 and then I never left the hospital. After retirement with the volunteers and I continue with the volunteers from them on."

Now a lifetime member of the GMHVA, Muna has chaired many different committees and is also a former president, but her passion is prayer, serving in the hospital's chapel religiously for forty years. "I help prepare the chapel to have a daily mass, I work there six days a week from Monday through Friday at mass daily at 11:30 and for Sunday its 3:30. I'm happy to help the patients for their needs if they need anything," she said.

It's this same dedication you will find from all the volunteers whether their holding a bake sale to raise money for their next equipment purchase or reading to children. Retired teacher Jane Rayphand and retired Pacific Daily News newsroom assistant Catrina Melyan walk the Pediatrics Ward sharing their love for literacy. "I'm doing something I love to do I love to read. I love reading for myself. I love to watch the expression on a child's face when I read a book," said Rayphand. Melyan added, "I enjoy it just makes me feel good like I've done something."

And it's not just about reading either. It's about extending comfort to families who are in the pediatrics ward for a reason, some whose children may be fighting a battle they might not win. "We become an ear for someone just to be able to talk and vent and cry sometimes and hopefully I've been supportive of that," said Rayphand. "It just gives them an outlet because so often it's also some sort of built up in them I've always been a good listener I don't know why complete strangers in the street yeah just to listen to them it's really good for them and let them talk it out," said Melyan.

Some would call these volunteers angels on earth, even though they don't see it that way. "I'm just a human being to do a job and this is what I probably was meant to do, yeah," said Rayphand. "If I can get a smile or giggle a little bit then I feel that I've accomplished something."

Muna said, "I'm very humbled to be working with a group of ladies like that to make sure that we're there for the patients and that we're there for the families when they need help, but I enjoy doing what I'm doing now and I don't think I will stop."

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