Celebrating volunteering at Hexham hospital
People from Tynedale who give up their time to volunteer at Hexham General Hospital were celebrated this week.
Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust held an event on Monday to mark five years of its Hospital Volunteer Service (HVS) at the hospital and to thank the volunteers for all their hard work and dedication.
The Trust’s HVS started in Hexham hospital in 2008, taking over the running of the shop from the Women’s Royal Voluntary Service (WRVS). Over the years, the service has expanded to include a snack trolley for the wards and a meet and greet service at the main entrance.
Ian McMinn, non-executive director at Northumbria Healthcare and chairman of the charitable funds committee, said: “All our volunteers play a vital role and provide a much-valued service to patients, visitors and staff at Hexham hospital.
“Volunteering has a long history at Hexham hospital and five years of our HVS there is an important milestone. We wanted to mark this occasion and above all thank the people who tirelessly and generously give their time to make this service happen.”
The shop, which was refurbished in 2011, is open 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday, providing a service to patients, visitors and staff. Money raised in the shop goes towards improving the hospital environment, buying specialist equipment and providing training for staff – this is over and above what the Trust is able to afford from NHS funds.
The trolley visits all four wards at Hexham every day, giving patients the opportunity to buy snacks, newspapers and magazines. The meet and greet service operates from 9am to 4pm Monday to Friday and directs patients and visitors to wards and departments.
Ian added: “I can’t thank the volunteers enough for their efforts. Our team of dedicated volunteers at Hexham hospital do a grand job however we are always keen to expand the team to ensure that we can sustain the service for the long-term.”
For more information and to register an interest, contact 0191 203 1354. Full training is given for all volunteer positions and hours of work are flexible. To find out more visit www.northumbria.nhs.uk
Volunteers carry out a range of roles across Northumbria Healthcare’s many hospital sites include facilitating patient activities, providing support at mealtimes, meeting and greeting patients and visitors at hospital entrances, and working in one of the HVS shops.