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story.lead_photo.caption CHRISTUS St. Michael Atlanta volunteers during a luncheon Thursday held to welcome them back after their service was suspended because of the COVID-19 pandemic. They began working again in the hospital Monday. (Submitted photo)

ATLANTA, Texas — CHRISTUS St. Michael Hospital-Atlanta volunteers have returned to duty after a "hiatus" because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Volunteers reopened the hospital's gift shop and returned to other roles Monday, following a luncheon on Thursday "to thank them for their dedication and to welcome the volunteers back to service," the hospital announced.

The luncheon also served as an opportunity for the volunteers to award scholarships to two graduating seniors from McLeod and Linden-Kildare schools.

"We are excited to recognize and honor our volunteers as well as provide them with educational updates in regard to infection prevention and COVID-19 safety practices, HIPAA policies, and stroke and chest pain signs, symptoms, risks and prevention," said Melissa Kimble, development/volunteer coordinator.

The gift shop's hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Proceeds benefit hospital support programs and help purchase new equipment.

"Our volunteers are enthusiastic about being able to support their community and hospital once again by returning to their contributive roles at CHRISTUS St. Michael-Atlanta," said Betty Anne Norton, auxiliary vice president. "We have been looking forward to this transition and are ready to serve once again."

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