16th December 2019
From flying high as an air hostess, to volunteering on the ground in the NHS, mother-of-two Marion Turfrey is enjoying a new adventure.
Exactly a year ago, Marion, a retired British Airway stewardess, was reading the Daily Mail, and saw the campaign to encourage people to sign up as volunteers in the NHS, an opportunity she didn’t know existed.
Marion, aged 65, said: “I have always enjoyed volunteering as I find it very rewarding. When I saw the volunteering recruitment campaign that Helpforce ran with the Daily Mail last Christmas, I knew that this was just the opportunity I was looking for. The NHS is such a great institution and I wanted to help my local hospital. I was hoping to give something back, as I have had a good life. I think Helpforce has done a great job in getting this all started.
“Now, I’m a volunteer for the Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in London, I help in the Charity Office. My varied career which includes being a flight attendant, and a project manager, have given me skills which are useful for this volunteering role.”
The retiree, who lives in Ickenham, London, now volunteers at the hospital every Monday and she loves every minute of it. She explained: “Volunteering is such a great experience. I assist with events and general administration and am happy to help out with anything that needs to be done. I absolutely love the team as they make me feel very welcome and valued. They always ask my opinion during our team meetings and they always listen to me. I’m so glad that I can help make their job a little bit smoother, quicker, and easier. That’s what motivates me.
“I would really encourage more people to volunteer for the NHS as the experience will broaden your horizon. I have learnt so much about the hard work that NHS staff do every day, and I now see how many roles that volunteers do. If you don’t want to be in the front line, you can support the back office. Every small act makes a difference.”
So what’s her next plan? Marion smiled: “I’m now helping the team at the Trust to organise a Christmas party for our volunteers to thank them for their excellent help. I think it’s so nice that the Trust is doing this, making volunteers feel valued and appreciated.”