Neuropsychiatric Patients' Association of Newfoundland and LabradorThe Neuropsychiatric Patients' Association of NL (NPA) is a non-profit organization founded in January 2008 by Dr. Hugh Mirolo, Neuropsychiatrist, as an offshoot of the province's only Neuropsychiatry Clinic. This unique association offers Newfoundland's neuropsychiatric patients an opportunity to address service deficits in the healthcare system, particularly in the area of neurocognitive rehabilitation post-brain injury. Many people are not aware that brain injuries can come from a number of different causes, including, but not limited to:
sports injuries (e.g. body checks, falling on ice, snowboarding/skiing accidents, skateboarding accidents),
motor-vehicle (including moose) accidents,
neurotoxicant inhalation (including carbon monoxide poisoning),
viruses or other infections,
chronic use of alcohol/cigarettes/drugs,
failed suicide attempts,
physical abuse or fist fights,
and many others.
Brain injuries can even come from injuries to the neck, face, chin, and even tailbone, and can occur even if one doesn't specifically remember hitting their head! Brain injuries touch each of our lives to a much greater extent than many of us realize...autism, Huntington's, stroke, Parkinson's, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy/seizures, dementia/Alzheimer's, brain tumours, and countless others. The number of people that could be helped by the NPA, with proper resources, is astronomical since Neuropsychiatry covers a surprisingly large number of conditions as alluded to above, and even extends to areas such as ADHD, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, eating disorders, sleep disorders, anxiety, depression/apathy, fibromyalgia/chronic pain, migraines, PTSD, suicide, addictions, crime, and many more. Our reach goes way beyond what's typically referred to as 'mental health', and into an area we prefer to call 'brain health', or even more simply: health.
We do not charge our members any type of membership fee because a large proportion are unable to work due to the debilitating nature of their condition. We have no government funding nor any other source of revenue at present so the services we now offer are much more limited than we would prefer. For this reason, the NPA is seeking volunteers in a variety of areas.
Health and Medicine
Volunteer Information for Neuropsychiatric Patients' Association of Newfoundland and Labrador
What services does your organization provide?
The Neuropsychiatric Patients' Association of Newfoundland and Labrador (NPA) is a non-profit organization founded in January 2008 by current Executive Director and Neuropsychiatrist, Dr. Hugh Mirolo, as an offshoot of the province's only Neuropsychiatry Clinic. This unique association offers Canada's neuropsychiatric patients an opportunity to fill service deficits in the healthcare system.
Neuropsychiatric patients and their families are simply ordinary people struggling against the barriers associated with not-so-ordinary health conditions. Obstacles inherent to these conditions are present as symptoms and behaviours that have the potential to produce numerous challenges individually and collectively. By considering neuropsychiatric patients as a group composed of ""us"" instead of ""them"", we can work together as members of a unified human group in which patients, relatives, and professionals can build a healthier community: one that not only looks out for the needs of its members, but fosters understanding, acceptance, and celebration towards persons with neuropsychiatric conditions.
Despite being relatively young, NPA already plays an integral role in the health and well-being of neuropsychiatric patients in Newfoundland and Labrador and across Canada.
Neuroplasticity promotion via neurocognitive rehabilitation programs employing cognitive recreational activities;
Awareness and advocacy-creation regarding neuropsychiatric issues;
Therapeutic milieu-provision fostering spontaneous support among patients and families;
Scientific contribution through Neuropsychiatry research;
Professional development through academic opportunities for students and NPA members; and
Liaison-establishment with various entities affected by neuropsychiatric issues.
Do you have any age requirements?
Do you require language proficiency other than in English?
What time commitment(s) are you expecting from a volunteer?
For most of the positions, once we accumulate a small group of new volunteers we are hoping to have a weekly meeting for 1-2 hours and then, if you're able to squeeze in little things during the week (say making a phone call, sending an email, or even working on a bigger project, like a brochure), that'd be fantastic. Generally, whatever you can contribute in terms of time would be gratefully accepted and appreciated!
Are there any other requirements for being a volunteer?
No prior training or experience is necessary, but these would be an asset; on the job training will be provided to successful candidates. These positions will start with minimal responsibilities and may become progressively more involved depending on the abilities, interests, and performance of the applicant.
Are there any specific skills and experience required?
Responsibility and reliability essential.
What type of volunteer positions are typically available?
Available positions are as follows:
Example duties: minute-taking; letter/email writing; document management (scanning/filing).
Example duties: Help organize and assist with fundraising activities and events such as walks, car washes, etc.; Contact businesses for financial support; Donor recruitment/management.
Human Resources Volunteer
Example duties: Interviews/recruitment of volunteers, students, etc; Organization/documentation of past applicants.
Example duties: Newsletters; Social media management: Help with the creation of website, Facebook & Twitter for more public awareness of our organization; media relations.
Example duties: In relation to weekly neurocognitive rehabilitation activities for patients as well as occasional fundraisers; update & maintain the neurocognitive rehabilitation activity database; organize social events, potentially including other organisations.
Example duties: perform Google searches relating to various topics; organize bibliographic references for active research projects; data entry.
Example duties: networking, encryption, App development, graphic design.
Business Development Volunteer
Example duties: help develop a business plan and apply various concepts from the business world to help our non profit grow.
Advocacy and Awareness Volunteer
Example duties: help write letters to various groups, promote the NPA/patients' rights, call VOCM or other media.
Cognitive Neurorehabilitation Volunteer
Example duties: plan/prepare various arts/crafts/hobby activities for patients; implementing these with patients during weekly cognitive neurorehabilitation sessions (confidentiality agreement required).
Example duties: any combination of the above.
Do you provide training for volunteers?
Yes, an orientation and on the job training to ensure volunteers are capable of carrying out their duties are provided by other experienced volunteers.
What are the typical volunteer activities occurring at your organization?
How will a person benefit from volunteering with Neuropsychiatric Patients' Association of Newfoundland and Labrador?
Helping brain-injured persons (including those with various brain related conditions, as outlined above) across Newfoundland and Labrador. Also looks great on a resume!
Do you accept high school students?
Photos, Videos and Social Media Networks