The role of volunteers is important and meaningful to patients, families, visitors and staff alike. They allow us to offer a broader range of services and provide a community perspective, as well as a diverse range of skills and experiences. Our volunteers also help us to make our budgets go further.

Volunteers are involved in many different parts of the hospice, offering support seven days a week, 365 days a year. The majority of our volunteers help out once a week for approximately two to four hours, although this varies depending on the role. Our volunteers are reliable and committed, allowing a wide range of services to be offered on a regular basis without interruption.

Volunteers offer valuable support across all areas of the hospice including:

  • In-patient unit - ward helpers serving refreshments and meals, visiting patients, socialising with visitors and attending to ward shopping
  • Day services - helping trained staff care for patients, offering a range of services including complementary therapy, hand care, catering, running our popular drop in café, respite support at home, hairdressing and Headwayr
  • Occupational therapy - helping with a wide variety of patient interests including gardening, arts and crafts, baking, reminiscence group,  creative writing, general befriending, music and day trips out
  • Family care service - offering befriending family support and bereavement support for children
  • Transport - volunteer drivers assisting with patient transport and passenger assistance
  • Stewarding - maintenance checks and assisting with deliveries of equipment
  • Reception - welcoming visitors, patient admissions/discharges and managing the telephone systems
  • Animal therapy - visiting ward and day services patients with their animal, for our patients benefit

Volunteers also assist with sewing and crafts, gardening, indoor plants and flower maintenance. They have a presence within our education department providing training and conducting DSE risk assessments. Many administrative functions within the hospice are handled by volunteers and our voluntary staff are greatly valued within the fundraising department; providing support to our network of eleven hospice shops, as well as in our fundraising office, at events, with lottery collections and local friends’ group activities.

Many of the requests received by the hospice to speak at public events are met by our volunteer community ambassadors who will speak on behalf of the hospice helping to raise awareness and improve understanding of our work.

"I enjoy providing something to the community and those who really need help, plus finding places in Ayrshire I didn't know existed!"

Ken Gray, Transport and Community Ambassador Teams