This week is Volunteers’ Week (June 1-7), and Mandy Carliell, head of patient and public involvement at East Kent Hospitals, has thanked those that give their time at sites including QEQM in Margate.
Mandy said: “Our volunteers are absolutely crucial to our hospitals and we would honestly be lost without them.
“They willingly give up their time for the benefit of our patients and staff and they make a real difference every single day.
“Each has their own reason for volunteering, whether it’s to make new friends or fill their time after retirement, or to help gain valuable experience for their CV.
“Whatever their motivation, they do a fantastic job and we are tremendously grateful for everything they do.”
Among those being thanked by Mandy are two Thanet women giving their time to help others.
Denise Stone spent 50 years working as a nurse and when she retired she decided she wanted to do even more to help the NHS.
So she signed up as a volunteer with East Kent Hospitals, and now helps out on reception at the Early Pregnancy Unit at the Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother Hospital in Margate.
She said: “I volunteer as after 50 years as a registered nurse I want to give something back to the NHS, and to try to lighten the workload of my colleagues.
“The best thing about being a volunteer for East Kent Hospitals is that my colleagues have made me feel welcome and part of the team.”
Sue Bolton joined the Trust as a volunteer after looking for something to do following retirement and is a ward helper at the QEQM.
She said: “My daughter is a nurse and I felt like I have something to offer to support her and others like her.
“The best part of volunteering with East Kent Hospitals is feeling like I’m part of a team and supporting the staff who are at the sharp end, hopefully making their working life just a little bit easier.
“And also giving out ice lollies to patients!”
If you are interested in joining the team, email email@example.com or complete the application form at https://www.ekhuft.nhs.uk/patients-and-visitors/members/volunteering-at-east-kent-hospitals/
The Trust particularly needs more people to greet visitors and patients and help direct them around the hospitals.