Do not accept a mission that is not posted on the website – Patients are not to call you directly for a mission…
- Call and/or email a patient as soon as you accept their mission. They are anxious to hear that their mission has been taken and this relieves our mission coordinators from extra calls from nervous patients
- Get a description of the patient and ask them to wear a bright color shirt and what color they will wear.
- Give a description of yourself, vehicle, wear a bright shirt and tell patient what color shirt to look for.
- Also, consider using the Houston Ground Angels Flag in your window.
- Check to make sure you have gas in your car prior to leaving to pick a patient up.
- After you pick up a patient and BEFORE you leave airport or their pick up location (such as a lodging facility) ask the patient and any traveling companions to sign a release. This releases you from liability. Print this form out from the website, which can be found under About Us, Forms and Documents. Keep these forms for your records if you plan to itemize your taxes or keep for a few months and then destroy.
- Be sure not to wear cologne or perfume, which some patients are very sensitive to smell.
- Exchange cell phone numbers, before the Mission and when you call them the first time to let them know you have accepted their Mission. Ask them to let you know ASAP if there is a change in their travel plans.
- Tell them where you will meet them i.e. outside baggage claim
- Let them know how long the trip will take and ask if they need time to use the restroom before departing to destination.
- Ask if they have any questions
- Smile (as long as it is appropriate)
- Have them confirm they have all items ( Cell phones, overnight bags) before leaving your vehicle.
- Ask if they are comfortable with the temperature in the car and make necessary adjustments.
- Do not ask them about their illness or disease, unless they bring it up. But even if they bring it up, do not ask a lot of questions. Their illness is a personal matter to most. Conversations starters can be the weather, things about Houston, ask if they will be needing anything such as a grocery store, etc. that you might point out along the way.
- Keep your eyes on the road and drive safely!
- Most of all, please know how much we appreciate you being a volunteers and how much of a difference you are making in someone’s life. For this, we thank you !
- At least 18 years of age
- Access to a reliable automobile
- Access to the Internet
- A working e-mail address
- A current Texas driver’s license
- Current Texas liability insurance
- Agree to submit to a background check
The flexibility of being a Ground Angel allows for multiple opportunities to provide a ride to our patients and we are grateful to our volunteers for all donations of their time. However, we do ask that if at all possible, a Ground Angel attempt to average one mission per month or 12 missions a year.
Become a Ground Angel— Volunteers known as Ground Angels are people who on their own schedule offer travel assistance to people coming in to Houston for treatments for their illnesses, many of which are cancer patients, by offering their time, vehicle, and fuel to transport people and their family/caregiver arriving/departing Houston and surrounding area airports. Other ways volunteers can help:
- Send thank you letters to corporations and contributors.
- Be a Volunteer Team Leader, and assist in planning coffees and get-togethers for the volunteers in your area, at no cost to the Volunteer Team Leader.
- Help with mission coordination.
- Data entry
- Corporate recruitment
- Volunteer recruitment.
4. How can I get started?
Give us a call at 281-900-7377 or email at HGA@houstongroundangels.org. Also, please take a moment and review the information under the Volunteer tab at the top of the webpage, as well as other tabs. We offer a great deal of information throughout our website. Thank you for considering supporting Houston Ground Angels and we look forward to meeting you !