Volunteers are being sought to make a huge difference to patients in Lincolnshire’s hospitals.
United Lincolnshire Hospital NHS Trust is working with Lincolnshire Community and Voluntary Service (LCVS) to recruit more volunteers for all wards at hospitals in Grantham, Lincoln and Boston.
Volunteers are needed for all wards, to do a weekly four hour shift to help out with duties including helping at patient mealtimes, getting involved in activities to keep patients entertained, and also meeting and greeting patients and visitors.
Voluntary Service Manager at ULHT, Andy Tysoe, said: “We owe a great debt of gratitude to our amazing volunteers, who give their time to support our services and really go out of their way to help our patients.”
“There are many volunteering opportunities available within all of our hospitals, and we are particularly keen to increase the numbers at Pilgrim hospital.”
Volunteering roles currently available in Lincolnshire’s hospitals include:
• Ward dining champion – to provide support for patients at mealtimes encouraging them to eat and providing assistance with opening packets and making sure everything is easy to reach.
• Ward activity provider – Taking time to give patients the opportunity to chat and interact through activities such as playing cards and board games, looking through memory boxes, completing jigsaws, word searches or crosswords or even doing their hair or nails.
• General ward assistant – to be available as an extra pair of hands to run errands, ensure leaflet stands are stocked, welcome and direct visitors to the ward, help domestic staff with the delivery of meals and drinks as required.
• Outpatients meet and greet assistant – support staff to meet and greet patients and visitors to the outpatients department, support patients in the use of the checking-in kiosk and to run tasks and errands as requested.
Winifred James from Spalding has been volunteering on Ward 3B at Pilgrim hospital in Boston for two years and said that she really enjoys it.
“I really enjoy helping people and cheering them up at a difficult time. I cared for my late husband, so that helped me to understand the role that volunteers play in helping on the wards,” she said.
“I feel my role as a volunteer is to give a boost to people, to talk to them and listen to them. Everyone’s got a story to tell and it’s a pleasure to have time to listen to their stories.
“It is lovely to be able to help people who often don’t have regular visitors on the ward. My role also involves helping patients with their food, assisting them in getting their food quickly and accompanying them if needed.”
Marie Chapman, Lincolnshire Community and Voluntary Service (LCVS) senior community development and volunteering officer, said: “There are so many benefits to volunteering, including making new friends, learning new skills, sharing your skills and experience and taking positive steps towards helping to gain paid employment.
“We’re proud to be working alongside the ULHT to further boost its volunteer programme and look forward to helping it to add to the team of people who make a vital difference to the lives of patients, staff and visitors.”
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