People who have given their time and skills to support and enhance the work of the trust have been featured on the Helpforce Wall of Fame.

Helpforce is a national body that partners with health and care organisations to increase volunteering opportunities and accelerate their impact. The talent and dedication of Oxford Health volunteers has impressed them so much that a number have made it onto the online wall.

And it’s not just the wall that recognises volunteers – 5 December 2020 is the United Nations’ International Volunteer Day – a celebration to thank all those who give their time and effort to good causes.

Julie Pink, Oxford Health’s  Community Involvement Manager said: “All of our volunteers and their supervisors are amazing for the support and care they have offered throughout the year.

“We are proud to see that some of the volunteers for Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust have been recognised on the Wall of Fame but I would like to take this opportunity to say that each and every volunteer is greatly appreciated and that International Volunteering Day really is all about them.”

Angela Conlan, from the Trust ,put forward Megan Rendell who has worked on the wards at Witney Hospital throughout lockdown and beyond.

According to Angela “she takes on any task with energy and enthusiasm and has shown great patient care during her time here. Megan is still at sixth form and would like to work in Medicine. During lockdown she rose to the challenge and has spent many hours talking to patients, helping with facetime calls to their relatives, helping with boredom by doing quizzes and simple art activities with patients as well as helping staff with refreshments. Megan is always smiling and is a valued member of the team.” Read more here.

Gill Dover and her team of crafters responded wonderfully to various requests for help from the Trust and other organisations and was also nominated by Angela. As part of a large sewing group, with regional subgroups, Gill and the other members all volunteered to make items needed for hospitals, GPs, Hot Hubs and any other healthcare practitioners that have found themselves in need in the current pandemic. Read more about Gill and her team here.

Helping to keep people safe – From April, a team of volunteers have been regularly supporting staff at the Blackbird Leys Centre to pack PPE into grab bags five days a week.

Their dedication led to the distribution of more than 22,000 individual PPE packs. This outstanding achievement was only possible because of the commitment and close working relationships of the volunteers and staff. Most of its members were new to volunteering and working with volunteers. Find out more here.

The team were nominated by Janet Poole, who also appears on the wall of fame. She became a supervisor for the PPE packaging team at the peak of the pandemic has also been commended for her contribution to making sure everything worked well. Read more about her here.

The UK Crafters Network Oxfordshire and Central Hub have taken their place on the Wall of Fame for making 1,000s of laundry bags and ear savers for staff at Oxford Health and 100s of knitted little Dr Bears for children of NHS staff who have had a parent working through lockdown. Mel and Claire have co-ordinated a massive response with their members not just for Oxford Health but for other NHS trusts across the UK. Read more here.

The small team of volunteers Witney Community Hospital who make sure that the garden there is a “lovely space” –  Sally, Gillian and Janet and Steve – have been praised by Claire Whorton.  She explains that: “This team should be on the wall of fame as they have kept both the staff and patient gardens immaculate during the lockdown period which has given staff somewhere to escape to, to have some fresh air away from the clinical environments and also has given the patients something beautiful to look at during their time in the hospital.” Find out more here.