Helpforce's response to the NHS volunteering taskforce report and recommendations

9th June 2023

The NHS Volunteering Taskforce report has been published today (9th June), outlining key recommendations to increase the impact of volunteering in the NHS. Our response to the report is below:

Mark Lever, CEO of Helpforce, said:

"As things stand, we are failing to maximise the huge potential that volunteering offers. We urgently need health and care leaders, policymakers, and local community organisations to implement this report’s recommendations – from ramping up investment in volunteer services, to designing flexible opportunities that enable people across the UK to give their time and skills.

"We know the UK public genuinely want to help, and we know volunteers are proven to make a measurable difference for patients, staff and systems. Now we need a shift in attitudes and infrastructures across health and care to unlock the full power of volunteering.

"Strengthening the links between hospitals and community-based care is vital to tackling the multiple challenges our public services face – and volunteers have a critical role here by providing a link between health and care settings and services, helping to ensure happier, healthier and more connected communities.

"This report’s findings align with what we know to be true from our work with hundreds of volunteer leaders and partners around the UK. Knowledge sharing to scale up best practice is key, as is building strong evidence around the value of volunteering to help prove the case for support. A greater role for volunteers across health and care could be transformative. We cannot afford to squander that potential."

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