My name is Jane Brown and I have been a Volunteer with Notts Healthcare Trust for the past 9 years . 

I became a volunteer after I attended an event in the Market Square where they were inviting people to become members of Positive and because I became a member I was invited to the AGM of the Trust, which was at that time a very large event with many stalls giving information about the various departments in the trust.  As I was walking round I visited the stall for Mental Health Services for Older People and because I had cared for my father who had dementia, I made the decision to volunteer at St. Francis Day Unit on the City Hospital Campus as I had recently retired and wanted to give something back to the community.  I volunteered there for 7 years until they moved to Highbury Hospital.  I also have volunteered at the Recovery College, Duncan Macmillan House for the past 8 years. 

At St. Francis I served coffees, teas etc. and helped out with serving the lunch but in between I talked with the service users and played games.  It was a great place to be and I thoroughly enjoyed my time there, the staff were brilliant and I always felt included. 

At the Recovery College I mainly worked on admin as when I first started there was only one member of staff to do admin.  I still work there and thoroughly enjoy it and the best thing for me is when I serve teas and coffees at the Graduation Days and hear the wonderful stories the students  tell of their journey to recovery, there are often many tears of joy especially from their families who are able to attend the Graduation.

I can’t say really what impact I have, but I hope that in both the places I have volunteered I have made a difference to the services users/students that I have been in contact with and also lightened the load a little for the staff.

I also have been involved in PLACE and MICE Audits for the last few years and I attend the Leadership Council meetings.

I feel passionately about Notts Healthcare Trust and the people you work there as well as those who use their services and I hope I can continue to volunteer and help for a long time to come because it has been a privilege to do so.

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