A visit to the hospital

So today I went in for my interview, to become a volunteer at Bedford hospital. After a few emails, a date and time was agreed at a time which was suitable for both of us.

As I arrived at the hospital I was greeted coincidently by a hospital volunteer who saw I was a little bit lost and asked if he could walk me to where I needed to be. I was not there for a procedure or anything stressful - but just having this lovely smiling face greet meet me and walk me to my destination made the start of my experience at the hospital such a pleasure. Imagine if you were there for some kind of procedure and were greeted by this lovely person - it eases any anxiety and makes the start of your hospital experience positive - you can't put a price on the benefits of that. He shared with me that he volunteers 2.5 hours a week on a day that suited him and that he loves it - what an advertisement for the benefits of volunteering on my way to my meeting!

So I met with the volunteer services manager and what a lovely lady and what a job she has!!!! This particular hospital has approx 200, very valued volunteers! doing a real range of activities. We spent just over an hour together where she asked me some interview style questions - nothing too taxing, really just questions to allow her to get to know me. Then we looked at some information about the hospital and how the volunteers add value. It was a two-way conversation and a lovely chat.

Then we did some paperwork - so of course a DBS check, a referee's form - so you will need to provide the name and contact details of two people who would be prepared to be a reference for you and an occupational health form which is to allow the hospital to ensure your safety whilst you are on site. I also needed to provide two forms of ID along with a proof of address in the form of a utility bill.

Once we had completed that we talked about the next stage which included the references being taken, the DBS check coming back and certificate being issued and occupational health checking my information to ensure my safety. Even though you are a volunteer - the place where you are volunteering is obliged to almost treat you like any member of staff in ensuring your safety at work (guest blog to follow from an HR specialist to explain further).

The last stage will be a training day and we talked about the dates that were available.

It was a great meeting which did not take a huge amount of time and was really informative.

So next stage is training day..........

Kerry Prest