Volunteering at our hospitals

We have made some short-term changes to volunteering at our hospitals in light of the current situation with COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Please contact the Volunteering Department by emailing esth.voluntary.services@nhs.net or call 01372 735079.

We have a large and dedicated team of volunteers who regularly give their time in our hospitals and services in a variety of roles.

They make a huge contribution to all aspects of hospital life, from patient interaction to running the hospitals' shops and radio stations, and fundraising for extra equipment.

And it's not just patients and the organisation who benefit. Volunteering is a rewarding experience that can transform your life by providing a new focus, new skills, new friends and the satisfaction of knowing that you are helping other people.

Volunteer information events

We regularly hold events to help people find out more about volunteering, and to start the journey to becoming a volunteer. Due to current circumstances, our Volunteer Informeation Events are on-hold. 

Become a volunteer

After attending a volunteer information event or contacting the Volunteering Department to express interest in joining the volunteer team, the process to become a volunteer can be broken down into five steps:

Step one: initial meeting

This is an opportunity to discuss what you are looking for and what you would like to get from volunteering, so we can match the right opportunity to the right person.

Step two: application pack

You will need to complete:

  • An application form and provide two referees
  • An occupational health form, which asks some basic questions about your health (we will also ask for you to provide a copy of your childhood vaccinations - if you don't have this information, please let the Volunteering Department know at the time of completing the form)
  • For some roles, a Disclosure and Barring Services (DBS) check application online (this provides clearance for you to work with vulnerable people).

Step three: DBS check and paperwork

A date to process the application for a DBS check will be arranged after your initial meeting. For more infomation and guidance on identification required, please visit the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) website (opens in a new window).

Step four: training

You will be invited to our next induction training day where you will meet other new volunteers and receive training and information about volunteering.

Step five: placement

Once all of the above steps have been completed satisfactorily, you are ready to volunteer! A suitable placement, taking into account your area(s) of interest and the needs of the hospital, will be arranged with our Volunteering Manager. You will have your ID badge processed (this needs to be worn at all times when you are volunteering, and returned to us if you are no longer able to continue volunteering). Volunteers may be eligible for an on-site parking permit which will allow you to park in staff parking areas at no cost (we cannot guarantee that a space will always be available, however) - please discuss this with the Volunteering Department.

If you are going to be volunteering through the Volunteering Department, ie not with one of our volunteer groups, you will be invited to meet the staff in your placement area who will supervise you on a day-to-day basis. We recommend volunteering for at least six months in order to gain the most from the experience.

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Healthy Workplace Achievement Award 2016 NHS Choices