Melanie Gager – Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust
1st July 2020
Melanie is a nurse consultant who supports both the Intensive Care Unit as well as supporting volunteers in the Emergency Department (ED). She was instrumental in the Quality Time research study which resulted in the creation of a refreshment service in ED run by volunteers.
She worked closely with the initial group of six volunteers, helping to understand their needs. She volunteered alongside them to see things from their perspective and the difference they were making. She worked with the staff in ED to help them appreciate the value of the volunteers and helped the volunteers feel integrated into the ED team. She then worked closely with our Voluntary Services team to grow the volunteering team.
She has been involved in interviewing volunteers and the coordination of their induction and training. She champions them at every opportunity and is always looking for areas where they can make a difference. She nurtures young volunteers, particularly those interested in a healthcare career. She works closely with our team to support volunteers with additional needs, for example, an autistic man who needed support when he was volunteering, enabling him to make a positive contribution to society and gain experience. Melanie is always keen to promote volunteering and she sets a brilliant example of how we should look after volunteers.