Our volunteers come from all walks of life. Some are people who have benefitted from our services and want to give something back and help others in the same situations as they were. Others are keen to learn new skills and gain new experiences or to have a chance to meet new people.
Whatever the motivation, our volunteers are highly prized by Care Plus Group and we are committed to supporting them to be successful and have a rewarding volunteering experience.
My involvement with the Older People’s Health and Wellbeing Collaborative began in January 2013 when I joined a new social club in Waltham. As I got more involved in the club I applied to be on the committee and was Chairman of the club until 2015.
I was then approached by Martin Wakefield, the Manager of the Collaboratives to help with a new project called ‘Good Neighbours’ and bring the skills I’ve gained from Waltham to other areas.
As part of the ‘Good Neighbours’ project I was involved in setting up two new social clubs in Humberston and Haverstoe. I am the Chair of the Haverstoe Social Club, which is currently thriving with 45 active members.
Volunteering gives me a sense of purpose and it’s nice when members say they enjoyed my quiz. I like helping people. It also means I get out during the day, I live on my own and have made lots of friends through the groups and also got to know other people and made links with other groups. I’ve met people from the energy efficiency team who helped me get cavity wall insulation in my house and reduce my energy bills, which I never would have done without the volunteering.
During my working career I was an electrician, which meant I was used to getting on with different people but through volunteering I’ve learnt many new skills and definitely believe it’s never too late to learn. I volunteer at Older People’s Social Clubs as a bingo caller, lead new age Kurling sessions and am a quizmaster.
When new people join a group, we always make sure they are met by someone and introduced to people. We’ll always announce we have new members before we start the bingo or quiz. We know it can be daunting for people to turn up to something on their own so always make an effort to make them feel welcome.
My advice to others who are interested in volunteering would be to go for it, you’ll need a good sense of humour and be prepared get out and meet people but its benefited me both from a social point of view and also knowing I’m helping other people.
Martin Wakefield, Health and Wellbeing Collaborative Programme Manager said:
Peter helps out with any events we need him to such as listening events, running new age Kurling Clubs and setting up new clubs. He is an asset to the team and it is good to have him on board. He’s a very active member and one we can rely on.
When my husband Ron died I felt my world had come to an end. I felt so alone, I didn’t know what to do, where to go, and had no confidence to find out all these things”.
Margaret became a volunteer for the Older People’s Health and Wellbeing Collaborative and Margaret is now an active member of the monthly Steering Group meetings and regularly attends the Events and Entertainments meetings where future events are arranged. Margaret is the Chairwoman of her own new social club in Waltham, at All Saints Church on the outskirts of Grimsby.
I felt so lonely when Ron went, but now I am having the time of my life. I have made so many new friends; I’m always out, going for meals, to the other social clubs that the OPH&W programme supports, going to shows, away on day trips and even on holidays.
The Collaborative has given me something to look forward to getting up for in the morning, it has turned my life around and I wouldn’t be without the fun, comradeship, and all-round better health and wellbeing I have found since joining.
“It’s so good to be working with like-minded people to share information with the public. It helps to know we are helping folk and though retired we feel that we still have a value. “Marilyn
“Meeting different kinds of people and feeling I’m making a difference.” Ev
“Office Team so friendly and helpful and it is nice to give back to the community. “Gill
“I feel useful, it makes me feel valued, I feel part of a team, I get immense satisfaction when I help someone, even in a small way
The vast majority of people we meet are grateful for what we do.
I like meeting and talking to people
Volunteering gives me a sense of well-being and appreciation for others
I have become more tolerant and understanding. “Mike
“The idea that I might in some small way encourage even one person to go to their doctor, get an early diagnosis and so be successfully treated for cancer is very empowering.” Liz
“I enjoy the feeling of togetherness and disabled people are made to feel very welcome.” Mary
“I have felt so welcomed by the HWB (Health & Wellbeing) Team from staff, team members and the wider care plus. The spirit within the team is one of caring, sharing of information and support.
Going out into the community and delivering the message we have trained for is both rewarding and gives a feeling of satisfaction.
The camaraderie within the HWB Collaborative is second to none, we support one another and everyone is valued and welcome.
The training we receive is excellent and gives us the required skills to promote our service/messages. Support form Julie, Rachel, Lisa, Margaret and co is wonderful, nothing is ever too much trouble and they take a valid interest in us as individuals too. Great work. Thank you. “Jan
“Volunteering has helped me to get to know my disease better, I have enjoyed the education talks. I was inspired by the buddy that worked with me. I feel like a part of the family, have made some good friends and feel a great deal of care for the staff and other volunteers.” Dave
“Volunteering keeps me active and fitter. If I hadn’t have become a patient and volunteered I really think that my life would be over.” Martin
“I wanted to give something back after doing the course. I really appreciated the buddies whilst attending Hope Street. The staff and buddies have done brilliant work and motivated me. I enjoy the social side of it.” Heather
“I volunteered because I joined the Hope Choir and noticed how happy and cheerful the staff looked. It is wonderful to feel appreciated by both staff and patients. I enjoy the companionship and enjoy giving something to the community. I feel I am doing something worthwhile and know that I have someone to talk to, I can always share my worries with staff.” Shirley
The Health & Wellbeing Team based at Queen Street Centre secured funding from the Commissioners, the Integrated Care Board, to support in raising the uptake