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Volunteering at Cheltenham General Hospital

Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust - Cheltenham College U6th students currently volunteer on a weekly basis at Cheltenham Hospital.

From the Autumn 2018, 4th Form pupils will be involved in a bench painting project throughout the hospital.

General Hospital offer our students the opportunity to meet and mix with patients on the wards, and help out with general ward duties.

Upper 6th College students attend on a weekly basis currently in the role of 'Befriending'.  This takes place on the wards and the role involves, talking to patients and helping at meal times.  Other activities include sharing of news, as well as helping with weekly menu choices.

From Autumn 2018 a new role will be 'Wayfinding', where students will be able to direct visitors around the hospital.

A new project will start in Autumn 2018 where the 4th Form will paint benches, as well as taking on some grounds clearing.

Aims

To provide opportunities to students where they are exposed to the needs of patients in hospital and learn sensitive and effective communication skills. To broaden students' awareness of the different roles found in hospitals.

To help improve the bench seating areas, as well as looking after the tidying of the grounds in public seating areas.

Success depends on students being sufficiently trained in order to fulfill the needs of patients, ward staff and visitors.

Beneficiaries include the patients in particular, who we hope enjoy our visits and look forward to them.

Students will benefit in terms of seeing another side of life they may not previously have seen; their perspective on life will be broadened; future medical students will gain from seeing the variety of roles/departments that function within the hospital environment.

Background

College identified that becoming involved with the local community through the hospital would present a valuable volunteering opportunity for our U6th students, and would hopefully benefit all those assosicated with the hospital.

The opportunity was identified through discussions with James Stubbert and Dr Dunning with the hospital during the Summer 2017.

The volunteering partnership started in October 2017 and has been positively acknowledged by both parties.  2018 onwards will continue to see the partnership evolve and develop, with new roles for U6th pupils and the inclusion of 4th Form pupils.

Resources

To ensure the project is successful there will always be an induction to the programme, followed by hospital induction to individual roles within the hospital.  Any projects that involve the 4th Form will always be accompanied by a member of College staff.

Impact

The project will be reviewed on a yearly basis, with regular interim meetings to discuss general progress.

Pupil Involvement

This volunteering initiative is available to Upper 6th and 4th Form College pupils.

Frequency

It is anticipated that this will be an on-going event.