Jan Carney to be Honored at Reception
Jan Carney can’t remember the exact date she was first asked to “help run the Gift Shop” at Atlanta Memorial Hospital after Mozelle Wilkins retired as volunteer Gift Shop Manager. She had no idea her initial commitment would result in a 30-plus year stint as the manager, still a volunteer position at CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital-Atlanta in 2018.
“When Theda Aud, who was president of the hospital volunteers at the time, approached me about the position, I let her know I had never done anything like running a gift shop before, but I was willing to try and have absolutely loved it,” Jan said.
Since 1987, Jan has dedicated an average of 20 hours per week to making the hospital Gift Shop one of the area’s favorite places to shop by managing the purchasing, invoices, and the volunteer schedule as well as the Bridal Registry. While she is handing over the reins to the new manager, she’s not quitting “cold turkey.” She plans to continue working in the Gift Shop on Tuesday afternoons to help customers in making their selections and ministering to them in the process.
“Volunteering with the Gift Shop has been a ministry for me,” Jan explained. “This has been so rewarding and given me the opportunity to form priceless friendships. It is such a blessing to be able to help lift the spirits of patients and their family members through my volunteer work. Every hour has been a path to give back to our community, to the hospital and our patients.”
“I have always felt free to pray with patients and their family members who are comforted by prayer and will continue to do so in my changing volunteer role,” she said.
An additional reward from working in the Gift Shop is knowing the raised funds are used to help support CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital-Atlanta with the volunteers’ latest gift of $40,000 going toward the Emergency Department expansion. “So many lives have been saved because we have a great hospital right here in our own town,” Jan said.
Additionally, for over 54 years, Jan has served as the organist and then pianist at First Baptist Church in Atlanta, and she has graciously shared that talent with the hospital on several special occasions.
“Jan is an absolute model of a steadfast community member who realizes the importance of making a difference´ said Thomas McKinney, MHA, CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital-Atlanta. “She has volunteered approximately 30,000 hours to our health care ministry, touching many lives. Those who know her are richer by interacting with her. We have all been blessed by Jan.”
After all these years, Jan still clings to a simple philosophy: “You give of yourself, your give of your time, and you make a difference.”
Jan will be honored at a reception at 2 p.m.,Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018, in the hospital Dining Room, and the public is invited, according to Melissa Kimble, Foundation Development Coordinator.