Volunteers play an essential role in supporting patients and their loved ones during their time in hospital. Pointing visitors in the right direction, assisting NHS staff or simply offering an ear to listen, volunteers are a helping hand to everyone who passes through our hospitals.

Many of our volunteers take part to support their local community or to give back to hospital staff after experiencing outstanding care. Others get involved to develop their personal and professional skills, or gain experience in a healthcare environment.

We manage volunteering in our hospitals, offering a variety of helpful roles and activities – from helping patients find their way and giving out information, to supporting staff and patients on hospital wards.

Want to apply for a volunteer role in our hospitals? Go to ‘I want to volunteer’ to find out more.

Enhancing patient care

Volunteers can transform the hospital experience for patients. By offering a friendly welcome or an ear to listen, they help to make the clinical environment a calmer and more comfortable space for patients at a time of distress, concern or anxiety.

Our volunteers carry out a wide range of dynamic roles across a large number of hospital wards, departments and services, with appropriate skills and experience to provide the best possible service.

Many of these roles give volunteers the opportunity to engage with patients, providing valuable companionship support and ensuring patients feel valued and cared for – from serving food and drink at mealtimes to spending social time in day rooms.

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Supporting NHS staff

Volunteers make our hospitals better places to work for NHS staff. Their contribution complements and enhances the care staff already provide, improving the overall service for patients and their families.

They also boost morale, ensuring hospital workers feel appreciated, valued and supported.

We work with specific wards, departments and services to help them understand our ethos for volunteering, while delivering basic training to enable staff to work effectively with volunteers in their areas.

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A great experience for volunteers

We want all our volunteers to have a great experience with us – so we offer training, support and advice to everyone who devotes their time to help us.

We’ve removed some of the biggest barriers to volunteering by creating roles and shift patterns that accommodate volunteers at different times of the day, including evenings and weekends.

Once our volunteers have started with us, they can access one-to-one support at any time with staff teams based in our hospital site volunteering offices five days a week.

To acknowledge their enormous contribution, we also run celebration events and an awards programme, so that we can say thank you to our volunteers throughout their journey with us.


Want to read more about how our volunteers make a difference? Go to ‘Our Impact’ to find out more.

Want to apply for a volunteer role in our hospitals? Go to ‘I want to volunteer’ to apply now.