Shandra Taylor has been a Child Life specialist at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital since 2018 and became a volunteer supervisor shortly after.
Taylor says the Diagnostic Imaging department allows volunteers to have a variety of interactions with patients and families. Child Life playrooms allow volunteers creative freedom with patients and siblings, as well as time to converse and get to know the families.
“Our volunteers are essential members of the Diagnostic Imaging team,” she said. “They add much-needed smiles and laughter to the playroom and help brighten the days of patients and families through play and conversation. Volunteers have an integral role in helping to ensure our patients have a safe and clean space to play.”
Taylor says every day is different and exciting. She sees many patients regularly, which allows her to build connections and see their progress.
“The best part about working at St. Jude is supporting patients in achieving milestones in their care, such as completing scans awake,” Taylor said. “I love watching volunteers connect with patients. The playroom is a safe, non-threatening space where the patients can just be kids.”
Taylor enjoys game nights and exploring new restaurants around the city in her free time.