Helping people who are having life saving treatment is hugely rewarding

9th March 2020

52-year-old Roy Hammond moved to Coventry to live near his son who is a radiotherapist at the Arden Centre in University Hospital Coventry. When he saw our Daily Mail campaign to bring more volunteers to the NHS he signed up. He told us that it has been a life-changing decision.

“Seeing the campaign and reading the stories of volunteers making a difference to people in hospital inspired me to make the leap and give something back to the doctors and nurses who work so hard. They’ve been there for me with various sporting injuries over the years, and I know how hard they work. More recently I had a scare and was rushed to hospital. The dedication of the staff was clear to see. I am a prosecution lawyer for Coventry council and they offer flexi-time so I was lucky to be able to sign up and give my time to something worthwhile.

“I volunteer for two half days a month in the same cancer ward my son works in. When I take off my work jacket and put on my volunteer badge it is the best feeling. I make tea and coffee and talk to the patients who are having treatment. Some are there for up to eight hours a day and they can get lonely. They like to have someone to chat to as it takes their mind of their treatment. Their family and friends also enjoy the distraction.

“I highly recommend volunteering in a hospital, it is a really satisfying role. The doctors and nurses stop me when they see my volunteer badge to say ‘thank you’, which makes me feel like a valuable part of the team. The staff are very busy, and the beds are always full of patients so I’m kept busy the whole time.”

“The training was excellent, and though it took a long time to start my role it was worth the wait. On one of my first days there I was talking to a patient undergoing cancer treatment. She had been a volunteer in the hospital and was now a patient; she reminded me how quickly life can change.”

“I have got a holiday coming up but I’ve arranged the dates so I can still volunteer on the weeks the hospital need me. Helping people who are having life-saving treatment is massively rewarding; when I leave the hospital I feel I’ve given something back and I feel really good about it.”

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