Volunteers at Mahoning Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation Center were honored at the annual Volunteer Tea last week for their dedication and service to residents.

Rebecca Bailey, of the center's social services, speaking on behalf of herself and Michael Mickey, MVNRC administrator and president, thanked the volunteers for their unselfishness and talents.

"Each and every one of you has contributed to the lives of our residents," she said. "Thank you for what you do, whether you dance, sing or otherwise entertain our residents, or provide other services."

Also thanking everyone was Cynthia Swatt, activity director. Swatt addressed the theme of this year's event, Volunteers Building a Better World for Our Residents, and noted that the world encompasses the planet, with its seven continents and the salty waters of the oceans covering nearly three-quarters of its surface.

As she spoke, she included several sayings that featured the word "world," and reinforced the definition of the world.

Swatt said that the volunteers were a very important part of the world of the residents of Mahoning Valley Nursing Home.

"You don't realize how you touch the lives of our residents with your smiles, laughter, your touch or hugs, words of greeting, encouragement, comfort or support, and taking the time to listen to what the resident has to say, giving them a voice, worth and self-esteem," she said.

Swatt noted that volunteers build a better world by offering a hand, entertaining, lifting spirits and giving hope.

"You make a difference every time you come here," she said. "The world of Mahoning Valley is different because you are a volunteer. As a volunteer you help our world go around through your gifts of love, generosity and enthusiasm. Your efforts make a difference."

As part of the afternoon's activities, the volunteers were challenged to list tools used for building and the tools the volunteers use to build a better world for the residents.

The volunteers were treated to light refreshments provided by the dietetic department.