Recruitment events are being held in Belper and Ilkeston with the aim of establishing a network of volunteers for a new Home from Hospital scheme to support patients in the days immediately after they leave hospital.
People are invited to find out more on Wednesday 25 February at the Strutt Centre, Belper from 10 am - 12 midday and 2pm - 4pm. A further recruitment event will be open to all at The Arena, Ilkeston on Wednesday 18 March from 1pm - 3 pm and 5.30pm - 7.30pm.
Jo Blackburn, volunteer programme coordinator for Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust, said: "We are looking for people from all walks of life, ages and backgrounds to be volunteers and make this scheme a success.
"Going home after a stay in hospital is often a difficult experience. It is even more so for people who do not have family or friends nearby or a network of support to keep them safe and well. That’s where the Home from Hospital volunteers can step in to offer some short-term help to make sure people are properly settled at home.”
Home from Hospital is funded by innovations charity Nesta and the Cabinet Office. Volunteers are not involved directly in patient care but provide practical support for up to six weeks after a patient goes home from hospital with things like shopping for basic food stuffs, ensuring electricity is switched on and that social networks with friends are re-established.
Jo added: "This new service has been designed to reduce the anxiety that a patient may feel during this time and help to support them back into their usual day-to-day activities. We’d very much like to hear from people who could give a few hours as volunteers for this worthwhile scheme which will make the world of difference to patients.”
Anyone who wants to chat about what is involved in becoming a Home from Hospital volunteer can contact Jo Blackburn on 01773 525114 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust is one of only six organisations to be selected to take part in this new volunteering scheme.