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Blossom Volunteering Project Celebration Event 2023

Blossom Volunteering Project Celebration Event

Gail and Rita laughing together

On Thursday 23 February, the Blossom Volunteers attended a Celebration Event to celebrate the programme’s successful first year, its impact at both sites, and to thank the volunteers for the invaluable work they do in supporting End of Life Care patients and families.

Simon Linnett addressed the volunteers to say: “in my view there is no greater contribution you can make than your time, and you don’t just give your time, you give of your emotional support and I can’t frankly thank you enough for that. It is the noblest form of giving, and you clearly do it to great effect. I am a businessman by background so I often refer to statistics, but they don’t begin to underscore the benefit that you offer.”

Jan Chalkley spoke to say: “We are so proud, I don’t think we can say that enough. It all started because we were seeking to improve the quality of End of Life Care in a compassionate way. It’s not just about the equipment and the nice touches, it’s about the people, and the care and support that you all give.”

Liz Lees speaking with a Blossom volunteer

Karen Bush said: “I was chatting with one of our volunteers who had seen an elderly patient who just wanted her family, who sadly weren’t there. That lady might not have had her family there, but she had the comfort of her volunteer.”

On behalf of Debbie Allman, who sadly was not there due to Covid, Karen said: “today is all about celebrating success, and it is wonderful to see so many of our wonderful volunteers here today… It’s your kindness, your care, and your humanity that really count.”

Liz Lees said: “In End of Life Care, the little things are really the big things, which makes the most difference to the patient. Don’t underestimate the impact you have on families, patients, and staff, they will absolutely remember you. For patients, even if they are unable to respond to you, they will know that you are there.”

Annie with Blossom volunteers

To close the event, Annie Tucker said to the volunteers: “thank you all for your dedication, none of this could happen without you. It takes special people to turn up with a smile on their face every day knowing what you’re about to do, but all of you do it. I find myself looking forward to hearing about your visits, working with you is wonderful, and doing this job has restored my faith in humanity.”

Blossom team photo