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Celebrating the hidden army who keep your local hospitals going

Margaret Moore

London North West Healthcare NHS Trust will celebrate the vital work of volunteers as part of Volunteers’ Week 2017, running from 1-7 June.

Information stands showcasing the work of volunteers will be held throughout the week at Ealing Hospital (Monday 5 June) and Northwick Park Hospital (Wednesday 7 June) from 10am-midday.

A special ‘thank you’ event will also take place where people who have volunteered between five and 40 years will be recognised for their service by the Trust’s Chief Executive and Chief Nurse.

Shirlee Hunte, Voluntary Services Manager, said: “We all know about the hundreds of doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals who work tirelessly to offer the best possible care for patients. But our hidden army of more than 550 volunteers also play a huge part in helping to improve the experience of being in hospital for patients and visitors, enabling frontline, clinical and nursing staff to focus on providing patient care.”

Whether they are supporting patients on the wards at Northwick Park, Ealing and Central Middlesex hospitals, helping visitors find their way around or driving patients to their appointments, volunteers are a major part of hospital life.

Shirlee added: “People offer their services for different reasons. For some it is a way of gaining skills and experience for a future career in the NHS, for others it’s a fulfilling way of giving back to the hospital that has supported them and their families. Volunteers fulfil a variety of different roles and feel a personal sense of pride and satisfaction in their work, particularly those who volunteer on the wards.”

Margaret Moore from Wembley is one of the Trust’s longest serving volunteers. The 81-year-old former teacher started volunteering at Northwick Park Hospital in 1977 and has worked in various roles across the hospital. She now works in the cardiology offices on Monday and Friday mornings dealing with the enormous amount of mail that passes through every day.

Margaret said: “My son was born at Northwick Park Hospital. It was a difficult birth and the staff looked after me so well. I wanted to pay the hospital back for the care they had given me so I started volunteering on Lister Ward doing anything and everything I could to help.

“Ten years ago my husband passed away and I appreciated the company more than ever. The team I work with are a grand lot and they count me as one of their own. As a volunteer I feel really appreciated for the work I do. I would recommend it to anyone. Come in and give it a go. There are so many different ways you can get involved.” 

Our volunteers in numbers:

  • 550 volunteers support staff and patient services across the Trust
  • The youngest volunteer is 19 years old and the oldest is 95 years old
  • There are 15 different types of volunteering roles to choose from
  • Volunteers give at least 3-4 hours per week to support our hospitals (some giving far more than that)
  • On average our volunteers contribute over 700 hours a week
  • Two volunteers have served over 30 years and two over 40 years

Want to find out more?

To find out more about volunteering at London North West Healthcare, please call 020 8869 2425 or email lnwh-tr.voluntaryservices@nhs.net and visit our Volunteer of the day page