R.I. Hospital, Hasbro Children’s Hospital honor 2023 volunteers

RHODE ISLAND HOSPITAL and Hasbro Children’s Hospital recently honored their 2023 Volunteers of the Year. From left are Phebe Vandersip, Carol Kosel, Shirley Mazzatta, Connor Macken, Arianne Parvaresh-Rizi and Jose Peña. / COURTESY LIFESPAN CORP./BILL MURPHY

PROVIDENCE – Rhode Island Hospital and Hasbro Children’s Hospital recently held their 2023 Volunteers of the Year Awards Ceremony in which five volunteers were honored.

“It takes a special kind of person to volunteer their time in a hospital setting,” said Adrianne Walsh, volunteer services manager at Rhode Island Hospital. “This special group of people have donated hundreds of hours of their time and helped support some of our most vulnerable patients. We know we are lucky, and we welcome this opportunity to shine the light on their dedication.”

Shirley Mazzatta earned the Lifetime Presidential Service Award, which is reserved for those who have logged more than 4,000 volunteer hours. So far, Mazzatta, 80, has spent more than 7,000 hours volunteering and still volunteers around 12 hours per week. Mazzatta has served in several roles, including as a greeter, providing tours and training, helping around the office, and doing rounds with the employee snack cart.

Phebe Vandersip earned the Rhode Island Hospital Volunteer of the Year 2023 award. Vandersip began volunteering in September 2022 and has completed more than 550 hours at Rhode Island Hospital in several different roles, including as a greeter and greeter training, working in the emergency department, patient experience, doing rounds with the employee snack cart, and special projects. Vandership, who lives in East Providence, graduated from Brown University with a degree in biology and owns an engineering and manufacturing company with her husband.

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The Rhode Island Hospital College Volunteers of the Year 2023 were Jose Peña and Arianne Parvaresh-Rizi. Peña is currently attending Providence College, where he is a pre-med student majoring in neuroscience and has volunteered 300 hours. He started as a greeter and has volunteered at the Lifespan Cancer Institute, in the emergency department, food pantry, the Hasbro comfort cart, and is currently a geriatric champion.

Parvaresh-Rizi, who has volunteered 350 hours, is currently attending the University of Rhode Island and was recently accepted into Brown University’s Medical School Early Acceptance Program. Parvaresh-Rizi began volunteering in 2021 as a greeter and since then volunteered in the Lifespan Cancer Institute, food pantry, infection control, and now as a geriatric champion with Peña.

The Hasbro Children’s Hospital College Volunteer of the Year 2023 was Connor Macken. Over the past year, Macken, a senior at Brown University majoring in biomedical engineering, has volunteered almost 300 hours over the past year for the Hasbro surgical services pre-op department and helps with the Hasbro Comfort Cart weekly. He is also known for learning magic tricks and worked in the healing arts department.

The Hasbro Children’s Hospital Volunteer of the Year 2023 was Carol Kosel. Kosel has volunteered in the hospital’s fifth-floor playroom since 2021, logging more than 400 hours. Kosel consistently volunteers each week and currently lives in Mansfield, Mass., where she has also been volunteering at the Mansfield Animal Shelter since 2007.

Katie Castellani is a PBN staff writer. You may contact her at Castellani@PBN.com

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