American Family Children's Hospital

Volunteer Opportunities

At UW Health, our volunteers play an important role in the overall success of our organization. They assist patients, their families, and visitors to our facilities and are valued members of the health care team.

  • All positions are open to adults.
  • We do not offer job shadowing opportunities.
  • Positions available to 16- to 17-year-olds indicated with a plus sign (+)

Volunteer Positions


Volunteer Positions: UW Health


Advance Medical Directives

Assist staff with informational booths and handouts to assist patients in filling out proper forms. Positions are available at UW Hospital and West Clinic locations.


Art Program

Assist Artist-in-Residence with projects throughout hospital. Must be an artist, art major in college, or former art student.


Carewear Host

Volunteers here will have the opportunity to support the service of UW Health CareWear by providing retail service and support to patients, visitors, and staff. Open to women only.


Communion Distribution

Catholic volunteers are specially trained by their parish for this job and further trained by ministers. Volunteers typically take one three-hour shift per week to distribute communion to Catholic patients who request it.


Daily Friendly Visitor

Provide a friendly visit to long term patients or to those who have family living far away. Volunteer can become a “buddy” to a frequent patient, or can come in to visit a variety of patients one time per week. Must have six-months of prior volunteering experience at UW Health to be eligible for this position.


Dogs On Call
Provides therapeutic interactions between Pet Partner-certified dogs and some patients.


UW Health Volunteer Services: Emergency room volunteerEmergency Department (ED) Patient/Family Liaison

Patient/Family Liaison volunteers facilitate communication and support to families and patients in the ED, providing a human touch and contact during times of extraordinary stress. Minimum of one year commitment.


Volunteers deliver flowers, gift arrangements and E-Cards sent to the hospital

Flower and e-Card Delivery +

Volunteers deliver flowers, gift arrangements and E-Cards sent to the hospital.


Gift Shop +

The Gift Shop provides many opportunities to interact with patients, visitors, and staff. The Gift Shop volunteer operates a cash register (training is provided) and helps to maintain an attractive display of items. This assignment requires an interest in retailing, ability to handle money, and willingness to interact with customers. Previous retail experience preferred.


Heart and Vascular Care Greeter +

Facilitate communication and provide support and information to patients, family, and staff as they arrive to the HVC clinic or to the inpatient unit.


Infusion Center

Assist staff with outpatients coming in for infusions and IV therapy.


Inpatient Music +

Volunteers provide musical entertainment in the Inpatient Unit. Audition required.


Inpatient Unit Host

Volunteers assist and offer support to adult inpatients and nursing staff by visiting with patients, answering call lights, passing meal trays, filling out meal menus, distributing patient mail, greeting families, escorting discharged patients to main entrance, etc. Requires an additional formal orientation before starting. Inpatient Unit Hosts are currently located on the following units:

  • Acute Medical and Progressive Care
  • Burn
  • Cardiac
  • Family Practice
  • General Medicine/Geriatrics
  • General Surgery/Bariatrics
  • Gynecology/Urology/Plastics/ENT
  • Hematology/Oncology/Bone Marrow Transplant
  • Neurosurgery/Ophthalmology/Neuro ICU
  • Orthopedics
  • Physical Rehabilitation
  • Transplant
  • Trauma

Lab Host and Cancer Center Lab Host

Volunteers provide customer service to patients visiting the blood drawing lab, offer help and often can provide escort to next appointment. Position is also available at West Clinic.


Main Information Desk+

This desk is located inside the hospital’s main entrance. It is the first stopping place for inpatients and visitors. The staff at this desk is assisted by volunteers who help handle desk activities, i.e. answering questions, giving out patient room numbers and telephone numbers, and assisting patients as needed. The people at this desk help make a positive and pleasant first impression of UWHC and gain an excellent familiarity of the hospital.



Greet patients and visitors as they enter the hospital, provide directions to locations around the hospital, escort visitors and patients to the appropriate locations, and provide any other needed assistance.


Nursing Operations Support

Assist staff in nursing office with light clerical jobs and assorted duties.


Nutrition Services

Must be a nutrition student in college or a retired nutritionist to qualify for this job. Provide assistance with special projects and office help.


Occupational Therapy and OT/PT Hand Clinic

Provide office, inpatient, and clinical support duties that do not require a therapist to oversee. This assignment requires that the volunteer be interested in OT as a career or be a retired P.T. Volunteers assist staff with adaptive equipment construction, project preparation, maintaining clinic, and craft supplies. Positions at UW Hospital and Park Street Clinics.


Outpatient Clinics

There is a growing trend toward treatment of patients in outpatient settings. Under the guidance and direction of the staff, volunteers assist in various ways depending on the specific needs of each clinic. These volunteers anticipate patient needs to assure a pleasant experience at UWHC, assist with escorting, answering phones, charting, and running errands necessary for the smooth operation of a clinic. Good communication and teamwork between the volunteer and clinic staff is essential. Following is a list of clinics that use volunteers:

  • Digestive Health
  • First Day Surgery/Ambulatory Surgery Center
  • Lung 
  • Middleton Rehab Lobby Area
  • Orthopedic Clinic (Middleton)
  • Otolaryngology (ENT)
  • Pediatric (University Station): No patient contact
  • Procedure Center
  • Radiology Oncology
  • Transplant Clinic+ (No patient contact)
  • Urgent Care East and West Clinics+ (evenings and weekends only)

Outpatient Pharmacy+

Volunteers will provide customer service, greet patients and visitors to the pharmacy, offer help, and answer non-medical questions. Training is provided, pharmacist training not needed. Positions available at UW Hospital Pharmacy, East and West Clinics, UHS-Lucky Bldg, South Park Street, and at University Station. Minimum of six-month commitment. 


Physical Therapy

Volunteers must be interested in Physical Therapy as a career. Volunteers assist staff with assigned elementary patient activities, maintaining equipment, transportation of patients in wheelchairs, and occasional clerical duties, Positions are available at the UW Hospital inpatient setting, Middleton Rehab Clinic, PT Spine Clinic, and Sports Medicine Center (Research Park Facility – 621 Science Dr). Note: These positions fill up very quickly.

Our STaR volunteers provide personal interaction with the geriatric patient population.


Psychiatric Unit - Inpatient
Help with activity groups for patients. Training will be provided.


STaR Program

Provides personal interaction with the geriatric patient population. Volunteer must have 6 months prior experience at UW Health before obtaining this position.


TLC Waiting Room and Unit

To provide information and support to family members/friends in the TLC Family Waiting Room and to patients and family in the unit. 


Wigs for Patients Program 

Volunteers assist patients with choice, fitting and care of wigs, turbans, and scarves (available at no cost to patient). Training provided.



 American Family Children's Hospital Volunteer Positions


UW Health Volunteer Services: Playroom volunteer
Book Cart
Update books in the carts located around the hospital.
Child Life
Help staff provide age appropriate activities in one of three areas at the Children’s Hospital. Third floor surgery, Diagnostic and Therapy Center and Emergency Room.
Family Meals/Frozen Treats
Assist in setting up, serving, and cleaning up the family meal and treats.
Fitness Clinic
Help exercise physiologists during the after-school fitness program. Located at 621 Science Drive.
Hospital School
Assist teachers with tutoring school-age and teen patients in the hospital. Positions only available during school year. Retired teachers preferred.
UW Health Volunteer Services: Hospital SchoolInpatient Rehabilitation Services
Help meet rehab needs by assisting staff with therapy treatments, preparation for treatments and cleaning/organizing equipment and therapy rooms. Prefer PT students or retired PT.
Kohl's Safety Center +
Assist staff with stocking and organizing. Assist customers with purchasing and education on home safety products, car seats, and bike helmets.
Pediatric Specialty Clinics 
Provide activities to children waiting for their appointment.
Pet Pals
The Pet Pals program brings volunteer dogs to visit pediatric patients at American Family Children’s Hospital. Pet Pals visits are designed to help children and their families minimize the pain and emotional trauma associated with hospitalization.
Assist staff with stocking and greeting customers.
Reach Out and Read
Read to children to help make literacy promotion a standard part of pediatric primary care so that children grow up with books and a love of reading. Positions available at American Family Children's Hospital and Madison-area clinics.

Special Events

Help staff prepare patients for special events at the hospital. Requires prior American Family Children's Hospital volunteer experience.


Storage and Organization+

Help staff organize patient equipment and supplies.
Teen Patient Activity
Assist the Child Life and nursing staff in offering teen inpatients with age appropriate activities in teen lounge and at bedside.
Tyler's Place Sibling Care Center 

To help meet the psychosocial and emotional needs of siblings of hospitalized children by assisting Child Life Staff with individual and small group activities in Tyler’s Place.

Unit Volunteer (P4, P5, P8 and PICU)
Visit patients at bedside and assist nurses/unit staff on a variety of tasks.
Waisman Clinic
To provide patients with developmentally appropriate activities in the clinic waiting area while they wait for their appointments. To assist with clerical work and help with the cleaning of toys used during patient visits.