Love Tree form

Great River Friends is a community of more than 700 volunteers and financial contributors that supports Great River Health Systems through gifts of time, talent and treasure. It consists of two parts:

Volunteer Services

A health system department that recruits, trains and schedules volunteers
Coordinator: Michelle McGraw, 319-768-3340,


Volunteers must be at least 16 years old. Volunteer roles depend on availability, experience, interests and skills. Public and behind-the-scenes opportunities are available:

  • Clerical support
  • Great River Gift Shop
  • Great River Hospice
  • Great River Klein Center
  • Health fairs
  • Patient and visitor escorts
  • Patient and visitor greeters
  • Patient mail and balloon delivery
  • Senior Health Insurance Information Programs
  • Virtual volunteers (crocheting or knitting baby hats, prayer shawls and afghans for elders; sewing quilts for Great River Cancer Center and Great River Hospice patients)

Reasons for volunteering

Volunteers have many reasons for sharing their time with Great River Health Systems:

  • Desire to give back to their community
  • Exposure to health care careers
  • Job experience
  • Requirement for academic achievement and recognition programs
  • Sharing knowledge and experience with others
  • Social needs
  • Staying active

Benefits of volunteering include:

  • Challenge – Volunteers build, sharpen and share their skills
  • Discounts – 20 percent at Great River Gift Shop, employee discount in the Cafeteria
  • Fitness and health – Flu shots, Great River Health Fitness membership (must have 160 hours of service a year)
  • Friendships – Connect with other volunteers and health system staff
  • Meals – Free meal coupon when volunteering at least four hours in one day
  • Recognition and fun – Annual recognition party; Great River Health Systems holiday dinner
  • Reward – The satisfaction of knowing you are truly helping patients, families, visitors and staff is the most common reward shared by our volunteers.

Great River Friends Board of Directors

An independent organization that raises money for health care scholarships and services that enhance patient care 

Ongoing fundraisers include:

  • Annual Giving Campaign
  • Book and gift fairs
  • Great River Gift Shop
  • Jewelry fairs
  • Love Tree

If you are interested in serving on the board, please contact a board member, or call or email Volunteer Services at 319-768-3340 or


Joyce Vance, president
Carolyn Breder, vice president
Donna Logan, secretary
Michele Dyer, treasurer


Michelle AbouAssaly
Lindsay Fruehling
Jack Hayes
Kendra Jahn
Lindsay Knudson
Sarah O'Neill
Pat Schardt
Joyce Taeger
Francesca To
Maryann Werner
Corky Wolbert

Ex-officio members

Jim Kammerer, vice president of support services, Great River Health Systems
Michelle McGraw, coordinator, Volunteer Services
Lori Mercer, manager, Great River Gift Shop