More than 200 volunteers are being praised for the ongoing contribution they make every day to help patients, staff and visitors at the Royal United Hospital in Bath.
There are more than 200 volunteers giving around 450 hours of their time every week to a diverse range of more than 14 activities at the RUH.
These include meeting and providing reassurance to patients in the oncology department, being a companion at mealtimes on the wards, running the Friends of the RUH restaurant and shop, tending the RUH’s gardens and flowerbeds, and offering a helping hand when patients and visitors first arrive at the hospital.
The RUH Trust also runs its Friendly Faces Project, where volunteers give their time to sit and chat with patients with dementia to help them feel more at ease while in hospital.
Trust Chief Executive James Scott said: “In this Volunteers Week we’re proud to say thank you to our amazingly generous volunteers, and to recognise their invaluable work for the Trust and the benefits they bring to patient care.
“The time they give makes a real difference and is hugely appreciated.”
Martin Fricker and his dog Fudge, who were voted Volunteers of the Year 2019 at the Trust’s annual awards, are well-known at the RUH.
They’re part of the Pets as Therapy (PAT) team of animal volunteers who visit patients on the wards.
Martin said: “I started volunteering after visiting my mother, who was a patient in the RUH, and to my surprise a dog came onto the ward.
“I decided that’s what I’d like to do, so, after completing the Pets for Therapy assessment, I was delighted when the RUH said they were very keen for Fudge to come in.
“We’ve been visiting for four years now, hopefully bringing some enjoyment to patients and staff.”
For more information on the volunteering opportunities available at the RUH go to: http://www.ruh.nhs.uk/get_involved/index.asp.