Bereavement support volunteers at Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust
16th March 2021
Shared by Patricia Hunt, Volunteer Service Manager at Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust
The Trust has been awarded a £50,000 grant by NHS Charities Together, which will go towards supporting patients and the health and wellbeing of staff during the pandemic.
The cash was given to Your Trust Charity, which supports Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, and will fund an energy pod and refreshments for staff and placements of newly established volunteer-led roles.
The money will go towards supporting patients with newly created ward-based volunteers who will particularly help them to communicate with their loved ones, and bereavement support volunteers who will be helping our End of Life team.
Val Wright who volunteers in a similar role said: “Volunteering with the Bereavement Care team as part of the befriending service is a really rewarding role.
“It involves contacting people who have recently lost a loved one.
“I ask how they are and we chat about their relative and how they are coping without them. Some calls can be challenging but the staff are always there for support and to talk anything through that is worrying me. I have my own list of people that I contact regularly and have formed a lovely friendship with them.
“Many say they look forward to the call and that it is good to have someone ringing them, who really wants to know how they feel. Also they are able to confide in me, sharing things that they may not be able to with their family or friends.
“I feel that in some small way I am helping them and doing something really worthwhile.”
Johnny Shah, Head of Your Trust Charity, said: “We are delighted to receive this grant from NHS Charities Together. As well as going towards the volunteer roles, it will also fund a new energy pod, based at the City Hospital site, where staff will be able to rest and recharge during shifts. They will also receive refreshments, including fruit, vitamin bars and water, as they forge through the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
NHS Charities Together is a membership organisation representing, supporting and championing NHS Charities and acting as the “collective voice” of NHS charities across the nation.