Cornell Companions - Cayuga Medical Center at Ithaca

Cornell Companions has been visiting CMCI, the hospital serving the Ithaca area, since May 1999. Currently, volunteers visit three different units at the hospital: the Mental Health Unit, which is divided into adult and adolescent sections, the Rehabilitation Unit, and the Pediatrics Unit. Two volunteers are assigned to each unit per visit. Volunteers may visit on Saturday afternoons or on Thursday evenings. On Tuesday afternoons, one volunteer and her cat participate in an Animal-Assisted Therapy program that has been incorporated into the treatment protocol of the Mental Health Unit.
Because of New York State Board of Health regulations, there is a strict protocol for the visits. For quality assurance purposes, documentation of immunizations and a physical is required of all volunteers, as is documentation of vaccinations, safety, and suitability of pets. Volunteers must attend a hospital volunteer orientation in addition to Cornell Companions training sessions.

Volunteers have developed a wonderful rapport with the patients and staff. The staff looks forward to Cornell Companions' visits just as much as the patients, as it is "therapy for [them] as well."

Distance from Cornell: 4.91 miles, 11 minutes
101 Dates Dr.
Ithaca, NY 14850