The volunteers and experts by experience who freely give their time to helping the service users and carers of ²gether NHS Foundation Trust have been recognised and thanked for their enormous contribution.
A sixth annual tea party has been held in their honour at Bowden Hall Hotel, in Gloucester.
The event included the presentation of certificates to many volunteers, as well as the Trust’s experts by experience – people who use their own personal experience of mental illness or learning disability to act as advisors.
Trust Chair Ingrid Barker said: “Our tea party was a fantastic celebration and an opportunity for us to pay tribute to everything our volunteers and experts by experience do for our Trust and the communities we serve.
“They bring so much expertise, energy and knowledge to us and richly enhance the life of our Trust and our services. We could not be more grateful to have such a wonderful group of voluntary colleagues at the heart of our organisation.”
More than 54 volunteers are registered with ²gether, and they work to enhance and improve the services the Trust provides.
Their work includes:
- Running a walking group
- Providing music therapy
- Working in the Trust library, supporting reading groups and delivering books to inpatients
- Driving service users to and from appointments
- Helping at meal times
- Providing peer support at the Severn & Wye Recovery College
There are more than 95 experts by experience registered with the Trust. They also help in a variety of ways, including sitting on interview panels when staff are being recruited, advising on trust policies, helping to provide staff training, and participating in focus groups to provide feedback on important issues the Trust is working on, including its long term strategies.
To express an interest in volunteering with the Trust or to find out more about becoming an expert by experience, please contact the Social Inclusion Team on 01452 894200. You can also view our vacancies here.