The positive vibe from volunteering is truly uplifting

The Budleigh Hub bus

The Budleigh Hub bus - Credit: Submitted

I spoke previously about volunteering being an altruistic pursuit which in contradiction yields many personal highs for the volunteer which encourages them to continue helping for perceived selfish reasons.

I have had some interesting feedback around this point.

Many understood my observation that volunteering is not conducted in isolation purely for the benefit of the helped person or organisation.

Volunteering delivers great advantages for the volunteers. A big rise is self-esteem and self-worth is the obvious one.

The Budleigh Hub is currently utilising its volunteers to facilitate transport to Covid vaccinations at the Exmouth Tennis Centre.

I spent some time with them this week. Waiting around in the frost at Maer Road car park for patients to arrive which doesn’t sound like the greatest use of my time but it was truly uplifting.

Despite the cold, the sun was glorious. All the volunteers were in a cheery mood telling stories of the patients' lives they had been transporting.

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Keith (ex-military) recalled a 92-year-old World War Two veteran who then became an architect. He had is whole life story in the seven-minute drive to the vaccination centre.

Keith was buzzing with the amazing life this gentleman had lived and was in pure admiration. This insight sustained Keith for the nine-hour shift he was completing.

When patients arrived for their transport you could see the excitement on their faces at the prospect of receiving their vaccination and the normality that would, hopefully, follow.

At the vaccination centre you could palpably feel the excitement in the hall.

Transporting patients back to the car park is not a silent affair either.

The loud, excited chatter in the vehicles is wonderfully varied. Considering some of the patients have not had a real opportunity to talk to someone properly for a long time, it is not surprising.  

I only spent a few hours on the volunteering front line and came away much happier than when I arrived. That is why I will be doing it again. If it helps me too, why not?

It might help you too. If you think so, please call the Budleigh Hub on 446896 to offer your help or you can sign up to the NHS volunteer responder scheme at www.GoodSamapp.org

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