Volunteering

"Volunteering for Newcastle Hospitals over these past months has been a really great experience, and it has given me so much joy in being able to reach out and support patients, providing reassurance and helping them to always stay positive and happy regardless of their situations." Volunteer - Justina O

"The volunteer's on this ward are a valued part of the support staff team. They have built relationships with both patients and visitors and often receive small gifts of gratitude from patients. They give their precious time, they are conscientious in their work and it is much appreciated by the ward, the patients and especially the housekeeping team." Diane, Housekeeper, Ward 36, NCCC.


The Newcastle Hospitals Trust values the involvement of local people as volunteers in activities that enhance the patient, visitor and carer experience, and also support staff in delivering high quality health care.

Your offer of voluntary help is very much appreciated, and you will receive a warm welcome no matter which area of volunteering you choose. 

Without our volunteers, we wouldn't be able to deliver the 'outstanding' care and service that we do today.


#IWILL YOUTH CAMPAIGN

Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals Foundation Trust has made a pledge to the #Iwill campaign, that it will give young people living within our communities the opportunity to take part in volunteering within our hospitals. We do this by working with local schools and colleges to increase accessibility, particularly for underprivileged young people, and to place students in volunteer roles which will enable them to grow in confidence and ambition. For more information visit #Iwill Campaign

Frequently asked questions

What kind of commitment will you need from me?

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As a volunteer there are no obligations and you are free to take on as much or as little volunteer tasks as you wish, all that we ask is that you commit to a minimum of 1 x 4hr set shift per week for a minimum of 6 months.

Who can apply?

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Most of our opportunities require a minimum age of 18 years however some roles are suitable for over 16's.  Under 18's will be required to complete a consent form which should be signed by a parent or guardian.


Why do I need to complete an application form?

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It is a requirement of the NHS that you complete an application form for us to obtain your details and also to ensure that we match you with an appropriate volunteering role. It is an electronic application form, therefore you will need access to either a laptop or pc to complete the form. The form can not be completed on a smart phone or tablet.

Why do I have to have employment checks?

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Due to the nature of volunteering in the NHS we need to undertake employment checks on anyone working, paid or unpaid on our premises, in order to protect patients and staff.

I have not worked before – who can supply my references?

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We require two references from individuals who have known you for at least three years. These can be from employers, but if you have not recently been employed these can be from other sources such as teacher or tutor, religious or cultural leader, case worker, community or social worker or family doctor. Friends, close relatives and family friends are not permissible and will not be accepted. We must have two references and they must cover at least a three year period. If you are unable to provide two references, or they do not cover three years we will be unable to accept your application.

Why do I need a health check?

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It is important for us to establish that you are fit to undertake the role you are volunteering for and to identify if any modifications are required to assist you to undertake the role.

How long does the application process take?

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Currently it is taking between a week to 6 weeks for applications to work their way through the process. 


How will you contact me?

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The majority of our contact will be through email, so please make sure that you provide us with an email address if possible, and do keep checking your emails.

Meet our Volunteers

Community Cardiac Rehabilitation - Volunteer Drivers

*See below to apply to become a Volunteer Driver

During the first few weeks after Patients come home from hospital, they are invited to take part in-group sessions at local community settings that include exercise, relaxation and healthy lifestyle advice. Volunteers provide this valuable home-to-home transport service to enable patients unable to drive, to attend the Community Cardiac Rehabilitation classes.  

Peters Story...

Following my retirement from regular employment I found myself subject to what all retirees must face - a lack of organisation in my life and very little human interaction. I had always been of a mind that giving back to the community would be a part of my later life and find the opportunity with CCRS fit the bill perfectly.

The induction and training were thorough and the personnel very welcoming and supportive aand it feels good to be part of a team again.

Now the best part, the patients. It has been a real eye opener to learn about the demographics of cardiac patients and heart warming and enlightening to hear their stories. Although we spend a relatively small amount of time together it is certainly true that relationships develop and it is both rewarding and sad to see them complete their course.

This has been one career move I do not regret!

Splish, Splash, Bounce Group

There are currently no vacancies for this role.

Splish, Splash, Bounce Group is specifically designed for pre-school children with additional needs. It is a joint group run between Physiotherapy and Early Education Additional Support Team (EEAST).  Our Volunteers work alongside Physiotherapists and parents, offering an additional pair of hands to ensure that the group runs smoothly and effectively.

Nicola's Story...

I have been volunteering at Splish, Splash Bounce for over a year now and I love it! I have a daughter who has special education needs and disabilities and when she was younger, we attended Splish, Splash Bounce and we both loved it! Now, I am fortunate enough to still be part of this through volunteering. As Splish Splash Bounce helped so much with my daughter’s progress, this led me to completing the rebound therapy training myself.

I help the physiotherapist’s with supporting the children on the trampolines, I have taken lead myself on the trampoline and carried out the sessions with the children. We sing nursery rhymes while incorporating Makaton signing and this is amazing when we see the children have learned signing through singing and playing. When we are in the hydrotherapy pool, I support on the side as a spotter. I will also help set up the toys ready for play time as the children love to have a splash and play before their pool session is over.

What I love about Splish, Splash Bounce is seeing the progress that the children make during their time attending the group, they thrive and achieve so much. The children know exactly what is happening and coming next from sitting on the carpet and singing the ‘hello song’, playtime, bouncing and swimming in the pool – It is so much fun!

CURRENT OPPORTUNITIES

If you would like to find out more about these opportunities or if you have any questions concerning applying, please give us a call on  0191 282 4075.

Activity & Mobility Support Volunteer

Various elderly & orthopaedic wards across the Freeman Hospital

Based on Elderly and Orthopaedic wards, volunteers will support patients who are medically fit for discharge but not yet able to leave hospital, to maintain existing levels of mobility by encouraging patients to go for walks or engage in chair-based activity or exercise, including games and activities to promote mental stimulation and enhance mood.

The purpose of the volunteer role is to help patients to maintain their normal level of mobility whilst in hospital, and to help prevent deterioration resulting from immobility. Volunteers will also engage patients in bedside games and activities to promote mental stimulation including and enhance mood.

All duties will be overseen by nursing or therapy staff but will never include clinical tasks or personal care. 

Description of main tasks specific to the placement: 

  • Supporting staff to get patients up and ready for the day
  • Encouraging appropriate patients to engage in movement and mobility.
  • Encourage and facilitate appropriate patients to engage in chair and bed exercise sessions.
  • Engage identified patients in activities (1:1 and Group activities)
  • Supporting therapy staff with group activities on ward
  • Supporting with ward tasks to support discharge- e.g. collections from pharmacy
  • Enabling patients to engage in hobbies (reading, discussions, word searches/crosswords)
  • Supporting identified patients to go off ward or outside
  • Collecting feedback forms from patients prior to discharge

Applicants will need good listening and communication skills with the ability to chat confidently with patients and when necessary, put them at their ease.  You will be supported by a member of the Physiotherapy team and so this role would also suit anyone interested in gaining experience for a career in Occupational Therapy or Physiotherapy.

Available shifts:

  • Mondays: 08:00-12:00 or 13:00-17:00
  • Tuesdays: 08:00-12:00 or 13:00-17:00
  • Wednesdays: 08:00-12:00 or 13:00-17:00
  • Thursdays: 08:00-12:00 or 13:00-17:00
  • Fridays: 08:00-12:00 or 13:00-17:00
APPLY

Youth Summer Volunteer Programme

Freeman Hospital & RVI

This New Summer Volunteer Programme is aimed at young people (aged 16 - 25) who have an interest in studying Medicine or Nursing. You will need to be able to commit to 1 x  5 day week (35 hrs) between 22nd July and 2nd September 2024.  During the programme you will gain valuable insight into working within an NHS hospital, including working alongside staff to support patients and enhance their stay in hospital.

Purpose of the Role

You will be buddied up with an existing volunteer to be a welcoming and friendly face for patients/visitors attending the hospital, and support staff in ensuring that patients receive nutrition in a timely and comfortable way.  As well as helping to enhance the patients experience, you will also develop new skills and gain valuable experience volunteering in a clinical environment in front-facing role.

Description of main tasks specific to the placement: 

Meet & Greet:

  • Provide a welcoming and friendly Meet and Greet service to patients, visitors and general public at the main entrance to the hospital.
  • To provide directions to wards/departments and if required, escorting patients & visitors to their destinations.
  • To offer additional support to visitors with mobility problems by calling porters for a wheelchair service.
  • To dissuade people with buggies, walking aids and people who are visibly impaired from using the escalator, and to instead, offer people to use the lifts. 

Mealtime support:

  • Offering support to serve meals, refreshments, and snacks.
  • Offering support or prompting patients to eat, helping to ensure food is cut up, packets opened and easily reached.
  • Keep patient water jugs filled and provide tea and coffee.
  • Make staff aware immediately if a patient has any clinical concerns.

All duties will be overseen by nursing staff and will never include feeding patients or clinical tasks, such as personal care. 

Weeks Available (9am - 4pm)

  • Monday 22nd July to Friday 25th July 
  • Monday 29th July to Friday 2nd August 
  • Monday 5th August to Friday 9th August 
  • Monday 12th August to Friday 16th August 
  • Monday 19th August to Friday 23rd August 
  • Monday 29th August to Friday 2nd September 

When completing your application, please include as much information as possible as to why you are applying for the programme and what skills and attributes you can bring.

Successful applicants will be invited to attend an informal interview either on the 29th or 30th May

APPLY

Pets as Therapy Dogs

Various wards across the RVI & Freeman Hospitals

We are looking to grow our valuable and dedicated team of Pets as Therapy Volunteers who provide essential emotional support, and comfort to patients across our services.

Under the guidance of the Occupational Therapist/Physiotherapist, the PAT Dog volunteers also engage in purposeful activities to support rehabilitation and improve general wellbeing of adults and children. 

All of our dogs have passed a temperament assessment to ensure that they are they are calm, friendly, are not affected by sudden noises, and they love to be fussed by adults and children.  As a volunteer you will be to complete our pre-engagement checks and online training.

If you are registered with Pets as Therapy:  Please email nuth.volunteer-recruitment@nhs.net to speak to a member of the Volunteer Services Team.

If you would like to register  as you think that your dog has the necessary attributes to become a Pets as Therapy dog, please click on "more information" to find out how to apply.

Requirement:

Commitment to 2 hours per week

More information

Volunteer Patient Drivers

RVI/Freeman Hospital/Community Settings 

Purpose of the role:

As a Volunteer Patient Driver you will be helping people in your local community access non emergency but vital medical appointments at the RVI, Freeman Hospital or one of our Community setting. You will make sure that patients arrive in a relaxed and friendly manner and taking them back to their home address after their appointment.           

All fuel costs and additional expenses are refunded.

To become a volunteer driver, you will need to:

  • Hold a valid, full UK driving licence with no more than six penalty points
  • Have access to a car with a minimum of four doors
  • Have fully comprehensive insurance
  • Undertake a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (funded by the Trust)
  • Undertake a Driver Health Assessment (funded by the Trust)
  • Take part in our on-line volunteer induction training programme

Minimum commitment = 1 x 4 hour shift per week

Various shifts available :  Monday to Friday between 8:30am and 4:30pm

APPLY

CHUF Shop - Volunteer Retail Assistant

Children's Heart Unit, Freeman Hospital

Since opening in 2015, the CHUF shop has proven to be an absolute lifeline for not only families and staff on The Children’s Heart Unit but also patients, visitors and personnel from across the whole hospital. Stocking a wide range of CHUF merchandise, toiletries and snacks, the CHUF shop now also provides tea, coffee and other hot drinks meaning parents are able to access refreshments easily whilst remaining in close proximity to their child on the ward. In 2020 the shop celebrates £250,000 in takings as it reaches its 5th birthday, with all profits helping support children who are born with or develop heart conditions.

Located at the entrance to Ward 23 at Freeman Hospital, the CHUF shop is managed by CHUF’s parent Trustee, Arthur Campbell, who has been on the board since 1989! The shop is manned solely by volunteers which means we are always on the lookout for new faces to join us.

Purpose of the Role

Volunteers help serve patients and visitor drinks, confectionary and small gifts with all profits from the shop being donated to the Children’s Heart Unit Fund. The shop is based outside the Children’s Heart Unit at the Freeman Hospital.

Description of main tasks specific to the placement:

  • Opening and closing shop
  • Serving patients and visitors in a welcoming and helpful manner
  • Handling cash
  • Replenishing and pricing items
  • Stock taking
  • Keeping shop clean and tidy

Available shifts:

Wednesdays or Fridays: 16:30 – 19:30

To request an application pack

Please click on the "Apply" button and type "CHUF" in the email subject box. In your email, please provide a little information about yourself and why you are interested in applying for this role.

APPLY

OUR PARTNER VOLUNTARY ORGANISATIONS

Daft as a Brush

Daft as a Brush Cancer Patient Care have worked with the Newcastle Hospital Trust for over 10 years, providing transport to patients who are attending their treatment at the Northern Centre for Cancer Care.  The charity and its volunteers have supported thousands of people in attending their treatment, free of charge and without inconvenience.

MORE INFORMATION

Tiny Lives

The Tiny Lives Trust is a registered charity that helps to care for premature and sick newborn babies, their mothers and families, in particular those looked after by the Newcastle Neonatal Service at the Royal Victoria Infirmary. The fund aims to provide the highest quality of care on an ongoing basis to support a range of facilities, staff, and equipment.

MORE INFORMATION

MEDICINEMA

The Medicinema located in the New Victoria Wing, RVI, gives our patients a fully immersive, (completely free!) cinema experience, no-matter if they are in a wheelchair, attached to a drip or even unable to leave their bed. Our Patient Assistants Volunteers collect patients from the wards and offer support to them throughout the screening.  To ensure their safety throughout the film, we hire two NHS nurses for every screening. 

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CHUF

The Children's Heart Units (CHUF) vision is to support pioneering services that will positively impact heart families, inspire hope and enable Heart Heroes to reach their full potential. CHUF supports children and families who receive treatment at the Children’s Heart Unit based at the Freeman Hospital and the many other hospitals providing care for cardiac patients throughout the

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Berwick Cancer Cars

The Berwick & District Cancer Support Group or more commonly know locally as Berwick Cancer Cars was setup in 1992 to help Cancer Patients get to their treatments to our hospitals over 60 miles away.  The cars are run by volunteers and proudly supported by the whole area.

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Radio Lollipop

Radio Lollipop is an international charity which provides care, comfort, play and entertainment service for children in Hospitals. Based in the Royal Victoria Infirmary, Radio Lollipop co-ordinates a team of Volunteer ‘Playmakers’ who spend time entertaining children on wards across the Great North Children's Hospital, as well as presenting children’s radio shows, broadcasting from its in-house radio station - part-presented by children themselves!

MORE INFORMATION

Trustee Opportunities

Have you ever thought about being a trustee for a local charity? It can be a great opportunity for you to put something back into a cause you believe in, help an organisation with your professional knowledge and expertise and also provide you with development opportunities.

There are several local infrastructure organisations that promote trustee opportunities:

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