East Lancashire Hospice

Community Services (Befriending) Volunteer

Role: Community Services (Befriending) Volunteer

Location: Community settings in Blackburn, Darwen, Hyndburn & Ribble Valley

Responsible to: Supportive Care Co-ordinator, Community Team (This person will be your main point of contact while volunteering. They will provide you with the support and supervision necessary for you to perform your role)

Accountable to: Clinical Lead, Community Team Role requirements: Two Satisfactory references
Enhanced DBS check (an enhanced DBS check will only be required for those roles which involve, regular, unsupervised contact with patients)

Role Summary

Under the guidance of the Head of Hospice at Home and wider Hospice Community Team you will provide a support and befriending service to patients, their families and those that matter to them. Depending on the needs, interests and preferences of those using the service, and in order that quality of life and independence can be maintained, you will provide the service to people in their own homes and/or other community settings.

When we need you to be available

Below are the time slots that we need volunteers to carry out this role. You can volunteer for one or more than one time slot each week and will be asked to detail your availability on your application form. As we would want continuity for the people using our services regular availability would be required.

Day Mon Tue Wed Thurs Fri Sat Sun Ad hoc hours by arrangement
Morning X X X X X X X Yes
Afternoon X X X X X X X Yes
Evening X X X X X X X Yes

Skills, knowledge, abilities and qualities

We are looking for individuals with a very wide range of interests, skills and abilities in order that we can better meet the needs of those using our services. This might for example include:

  • Experience of using any sort of arts and crafts with individuals and/or groups
  • Interest and ability in gardening and/or outdoor activity or walking
  • An interest in film, theatre, television, reading and news stories
  • An interest in world affairs, nature and the environment
  • An interest in pets and other animals
  • Able to engage in meaningful conversations on topics that matter to individuals
  • Able to read in an interesting way to others, sing and/or play music
  • Enjoyment of table games
  • Ability to support with light domestic/­household duties and/or provide light refreshments
  • Good communication skills, sensitive to the needs of others, approachable and warm with the ability to build relationships
  • Problem solving ability
  • Able to really listen to people and comfortable with silence when others need quiet time

What we would like you to do

  • Visit patients in their own homes to provide companionship and social interaction.
  • To sit with patients to enable their carers to attend appointments or social events.
  • To accompany patients to appointments or social events including for example libraries, parks and museums
  • To help patients continue with their hobbies or pass-times.
  • To pursue creative activities with individuals in the home environment
  • To support individuals with household duties and meal preparation including light meals, snacks and drinks
  • To listen and support individuals as they explore their preferences and choices for future care
  • Engage with and work alongside individuals to motivate, enthuse, promote independence and empower.
  • To provide light assistance in maintaining gardens and paths where possible.
  • To accompany or undertake shopping trips with (or for) patients.
  • Help with care of pets e.g. feeding and walking.
  • Provide assistance with appearance including for example attending to hair, beards and painting nails.

What Volunteering can do for you

  • Connect with new people
  • Develop new or use existing skills
  • Get experience
  • Make a big difference to your community

General Requirements

Undertake training and development applicable to the role.

Be friendly, respectful and courteous to patients, visitors, staff, customers and other volunteers at all times

To ensure the information you have access to as part of your role is kept secure and confidential.

Work at all times to safeguard the rights of individuals promoting their wellbeing and protecting those at risk from harm by advising staff of any concerns

Act in a way that upholds the hospice’s values which are:

  • Patients are individuals and have a right to respect, privacy, dignity and choice
  • Staff and volunteers are vital to the hospice’s success, and it is their contribution which provides the hospice with its quality service and reputation
  • Our services should be focused on meeting our patients’ requirements
  • Value for money is achieved making the most effective use of available resources
  • Ensure that personal actions and conduct apply with hospice policies and procedures
  • Ensure effective use of hospice resources

Review of this description

This role description is intended as an outline of general areas of activities and will be amended in the light of changing needs of the hospice.

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