The Heart of the Hospice. Our volunteers are the beating heart of Prospect Hospice

August 2018


Our volunteers are the beating heart of Prospect Hospice. Their talents and time help us give the best-possible care for patients and their families. What roles are available? What can you expect from the experience? And how can you get involved? Voluntary Services Recruitment Officer, Graham Biggs, and minibus driver, Geoff Winn, volunteer the answers…

“Without our volunteers, we simply couldn’t do everything we do,” says Graham. “Whether they’re supporting in the hospice or our shops, transporting patients or helping our Fundraising team, every volunteer plays a big role in helping us care for people.”

Graham joined Prospect Hospice in 2016 following a career in banking. “My family and I have always supported Prospect Hospice,” he says. “After leaving banking, I saw an advert for the role and thought, ‘I’d like to help’. And I love what I do. Every day is different.”

A typical day sees Graham answering queries from prospective volunteers to bringing people on board. “People get in touch on our website, pick up the phone and even walk into the hospice. I’m here to guide them easily into volunteering, from chatting about the roles to completing the paperwork.”
What motivates people to get involved? “There are lots of reasons people volunteer,” says Graham. “It can be about experiencing new things. For example, young people often enjoy working in our shops where they gain retail experience. Many like making friends and learning new skills. But one thing is common to everyone: they want to support our work and patients, because they value what we do.”

As Graham explains, there’s a role for everyone. “Our current priorities are for roles in our shops and distribution centre, and for van drivers, and drivers’ mates. But there are so many opportunities for all ages and abilities. People can also support us in the hospice, for example, serving in our café, preparing food, assisting our nurses and providing complementary therapies. And they can do as much or as little as they like. Some of our volunteers take on lots of roles, such as doing shifts in our shops then working in our café.”

Volunteers receive all the help they need, including training and meetings where they can share ideas and concerns. “We’re also holding more social events, such as Prospect Pals, where volunteers run a quiz night. It’s a great way to make friends and feel part of something special.”

Geoff Winn has been a minibus driver for the hospice for just over three years – a far cry from his previous role as a European procurement manager for a global financial firm. “When I retired, I thought, ‘Should I get another job or give something back?’,” he says. “I enjoy driving and helping people, so I contacted Prospect Hospice and have been transporting patients ever since.”

What advice does he have for those considering volunteering? “Go for it. You can do as little or as much as you want. Even if you put in just a bit of time, you’ll get a lot back.”

Do you like the idea of volunteering for Prospect Hospice? We’d love you to get involved. Please contact us at www.prospect-hospice.net/volunteering or call Graham Biggs on 01793 816193.

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