9 August 2023

Celebrating the long service of our volunteers

Volunteers across the trust have been recognised for their dedication with the presentation of long service awards at recent events held at both Conquest Hospital and Eastbourne DGH.

A total of 107 volunteers were awarded for an incredible 931 years of combined voluntary service between them. Volunteers who were invited to the events have provided 5, 10, 15, 20 or 25 years of committed service to the organisation, helping to enhance patient experience every step of the way.

This year’s award winners came from our teams who help on wards, provide admin support, assist the work of the cardiac rehab team, provide a warm welcome to visitors front of house, visit patients in a chaplaincy capacity and support the work of the trust’s volunteering partners, the Friends charities and Hospital Radio.

With just over 400 volunteers currently offering their time, our longest serving volunteer has now been a member of the DGH Radio team for 43 years… and still counting!

Volunteers who attended were presented their awards by Steve Aumayer, Deputy Chief Executive and Chief People Officer, Greig Woodfield, Assistant Director HR Resourcing, and Laura Ransom, TWS and Voluntary Services Manager. Afterwards a celebratory buffet was served, and volunteers chatted to colleagues from the trust who came along to the events to offer their own words of thanks and congratulations.

The trust’s voluntary services team who proudly co-ordinate and support the volunteers said:

“These annual events give us the opportunity to celebrate and recognise the value volunteers bring to our organisation. It is extremely important to recognise the support this team give every day to our hospitals, colleagues and patients.”

Volunteers shared their own appreciation of being recognised.

Pat Connolly, Meet and Greet Volunteer at Conquest said, “I was pleased to receive my 15 years’ badge and certificate in recognition of my volunteering service. It means a lot to have this acknowledged and I can honestly say I have very much enjoyed my time volunteering and met some lovely people – both patients and trust colleagues.”

Bob Ayers, Ophthalmology Admin Support at Bexhill added, “It’s lovely to be recognised officially for our time. As volunteers, we get quite a bit of satisfaction from contributing our little bit to the community, but we do it principally because we enjoy it. We’re always appreciated and made to feel we are members of the wider trust team. I had to be talked into volunteering at the beginning but that was nine years ago, and I am still loving it!”

In addition to long service recognition, this year marked the introduction of staff commendations for volunteers. One such awardee was Gloria Pike, nominated by Danielle Lloyd, Endoscopy Matron, who said, “Gloria has been a volunteer in endoscopy for two years. Nothing is too much for her and she always has a smile on her face. Gloria is very much part of the endoscopy family, and we really appreciate everything she does for the unit.”

Volunteers are an integral part of the NHS. They are the often unsung heroes who quietly make a difference in whatever way they can. We have just over 400 of these heroes currently and we are ready to take on more.

Interested in becoming a volunteer? Find out more.