Southend Hospital says ‘thank you’ to all its volunteers
09 June 2017
More than 170 volunteers at Southend Hospital were thanked for all their hard work at the Volunteer Achievement Awards on Wednesday 7 June at Saxon Hall, Southend.
It's the fourth year the awards have been held, which honours
both long-standing volunteers nominated by their managers and the
contribution of relative newcomers who have gone that extra mile.
Awards were handed out by Southend's Chairman Alan Tobias and
Managing Director Yvonne Blücher.
Mr Tobias told the audience that he felt 'humbled' by their
contribution. He said: "You just cannot put a price on what you do
- this hospital couldn't function without you."
Yvonne Blücher, added: "We are blessed with an ever-increasing
number of volunteers - around 500 at the last count. In January we
started recruiting volunteers to help patients waiting to be
discharged from hospital.
"And we have also taken on more dementia befrienders in order to
help on our care of the elderly wards and in our newly opened day
rooms on Windsor and Princess Anne wards. Our volunteers are all
very much appreciated for all the hours that they give."
View the gallery of images on Facebook: http://bit.ly/VolAwards_2017
Volunteer Achievement Award Winners 2017
Lifetime Achievement Award - Linda Ansell and Maureen
The Thorpe Bay twosome started in the mid-1980s selling
bric-a-brac and knitted goods from a stall, raising hundreds of
thousands of pounds over the years.
In 2009 they both received an MBE for their services to charity.
And Maureen didn't even let a broken hip slow her down last
Chairman's Award - Dianne Woodley
Dianne, 67, works with patients with alcohol-related problems on
Eleanor Hobbs ward, supporting patients not only in hospital but,
following their discharge, arranging to meet them and taking them
Deputy Ward Manager Julie Bush said: "We truly believe Dianne
has saved the lives of many patients when all else has failed."
The Joyce Long Fundraising Achievement Award - Joan
Joan, 63 from Benfleet, has played an invaluable part in the
birth of our successful charity shops in Westcliff and Leigh.
She has dedicated countless hours sourcing stock and picking up
furniture. Her knowledge of antiques and furniture, as well as a
natural salesmanship and drive, has help contributed to the tens of
thousands of pounds both shops have raised for the hospital.
Joan is a worthy recipient of this award, named in honour of
charity champ Joyce, who sadly died in December 2015 after raising
more than £1.2 million for the hospital.
Most Inspirational Award - Pets as Therapy volunteer Claire Dean
and her dog, Rolo
Lauded by staff on the stroke ward, Neptune children's unit, and
Elizabeth Loury (cancer) ward, the therapy provided by Claire, 53,
from Thorpe Bay, and her springer spaniel/poodle cross Rolo, a
'Sproodle' aged 4, are now incorporated into some clinical care
On the stroke ward, the duo help in rehabilitation sessions with
patients who find it difficult to engage in rehab in a traditional
way and also cheer up poorly youngsters on Neptune.
Play Specialist, Lisa Kawa-Akenbo, said: "Rolo has become an
unofficial ward mascot! We look forward to their visits as we
see how much it benefits our patients."
Unsung Hero Award - Gary Rushman
Gary, 36, from Shoebury, works in the medical records department
and has been a member of Southend Hospital Radio since 2010, where
he presents two shows a week and goes onto wards to chat to
patients and to gather song requests for his show.
Happy to Help Award - Peter Robinson
Peter, from Westcliff, may be 83, but he clocks up miles every
week along hospital corridors, helping the Patient Experience Team
two days a week by handing out and collecting survey postcards.
Feedback from patients and their families form an invaluable part
of helping the hospital to improve its services.
Personal Challenge Award - Valerie Hand and Sarah
Valerie and Sarah provide admin support to the oncology office
team and are inspirational having overcome major health
Val, 57, from Rayleigh, spent six weeks in a coma back in 2009,
which left her with short and long term memory loss. She spent a
year in various London hospitals learning to walk and talk.
Val began volunteering at the hospital five years ago, but she
was then diagnosed with two forms of cancer. She hasn't let this
defeat her. Manager, Glenda Booth, said: "She is always reliable,
witty with a sharp sense of humour and volunteers on a regular
Sarah, 61, from Shoebury, is profoundly deaf, and went through
the agony of applying and being rejected from countless jobs, after
being deemed as fit to work by the Job Centre after the 2010
Glenda said: "Sarah is absolutely lovely to work with, always
cheerful, very capable and a great support. I feel very fortunate
to have a volunteer who is so flexible and willing to 'work outside
Charity shops, Leigh and Westcliff
Southend Hospital's two charity shops, in Hamlet Court Road,
Westcliff and Broadway West, Leigh, raise tens of thousands of
pounds a year for the hospital. They are open six days a week and
manned by 30 volunteers.
Lucy Thomas-Clayton, Associate Director of Fundraising, said:
"None of it would have been possible without the patience, good
nature and time given up by our magnificent teams."
Macmillan Information and Support Centre
The centre, based near main outpatients, has been open for more
than three years and has 32 volunteers; all play an integral part
at the centre.
They offer a variety of services, providing a welcome,
information and support, both at the centre and in the chemotherapy
and radiotherapy units. Volunteers qualified in meditation, seated
yoga, and complementary therapies such as acupuncture also lead
sessions for patients and families. Some even bake cakes and
provide IT skills and arrange courses.
Friederike Englund, Macmillan Information Manager, said: "Our
volunteers are actively involved in service development but above
all they provide empathetic skilled general support, assisting a
user to tell their story, help them find a voice and discover where
they are at."
Long Service Awards
General hospital volunteerscelebrating more than a decade of
Carecars driversAlan Watkinson, 73, from Hawkwell, andBrenda
Dowton, 67, from Leigh, who drive patients to and from hospital
appointments. Brenda also volunteers on the Cardigan Wing
information desk taking bookings.
Anthony Burton, 80, from Westcliff, a Renal and Chemotherapy
Unit driver. A former driver with the ambulance service, Tony works
Saturdays and evenings for the two units and draws up the rota for
Outpatients volunteersRussell Gunn,70, from Shoebury,Dennis
Childs76, from Hadleigh, andBeryl Thompson,77, from Southend, are
often the first point of contact for patients using our busy
Hospital Library volunteerSheila Cleary, 71, from Leigh, was one
of the founder members of the hospital mobile library service,
which runs three mornings a week taking good-quality paperbacks
around the wards.
Sheila Edwards, 81, from Shoebury, has been a ward help on
Shopland ward for 14 years, and is adored by staff there, who
comment on her cheeriness and willingness to help in any way she
Ian Barker, 56, from Shoebury, is a former caterer who became a
volunteer gardener before transferring to the medical records
department, where he delivers notes and some post.
Gillian Stock, 74, from Rayleigh, in Essex, has been a stalwart
admin help in the Chemotherapy Unit for the last 10 years and is
described by colleagues as 'always taking the time to speak to
patients as well as the arduous task of filing'.
Diane Paisley,73, from Southend, has been a clerk in Elective
Admissions for the past 14 years, making up packs for patients and
even making staff a cuppa.
These eight volunteers have clocked up a whopping 128 years'
service between them, with one, Margaret Allen, 77, from
Hullbridge, a volunteer for 37 years. David Childs, Hospital
Chaplain said: "The team really go the extra mile - their
commitment to what they do is quite humbling."
Gordon Bates, 83, from Thundersley,18 years;
Colin Burwell, 72, from Leigh, 10 years;
Gillian Cotter, 68, from Southend, 20 years;
Pamela Gaines, 66, from Benfleet,18 years;
Margaret Holland, 79, from Leigh, 15 years;
Keith McCullough, 86, from Leigh, 18 years;
Patricia Rayment, 73, from Benfleet, 10 years.