An update from Kingston Hospital’s volunteering service

15 August 2023

During the recent planned industrial action events, Kingston Hospital’s volunteers have been instrumental in keeping staff motivated and supported, both at the picket line and across the hospital. In March alone, volunteers gave time equating to over 50 additional working days in order to take refreshments and morale-boosting support to staff, providing safe hospital care in exceptional circumstances. These wellbeing trolleys have continued throughout periods of industrial action, encouraging staff to take breaks throughout their working day.

Thanks to support from Kingston Hospital Charity, we have recently received funding to expand our volunteering portfolio of roles and services. We have welcomed Giedre Howell back into the volunteering team and Nikki Davies who has joined us from the Staff Day Nursery as a job-share in the role of Volunteer Experience Coordinator. This role focuses on volunteer outreach, checking in on volunteers across both hospital and community to ensure they are happy in their roles and enabling us to provide continual improvement and role satisfaction. If you are a volunteer and have any feedback about your role, you can email

With thanks to the South West London Integrated Care Board, the volunteering team has also introduced a brand new volunteering role of Community Companions, bringing all the benefits of a volunteering friendship and companionship for older people across Kingston. This role is part of the Volunteering Discharge Support Service and links Community Companions with patients who have been recently discharged from Kingston Hospital and may need some additional help and encouragement to get connected back with their hobbies, interests and local community. Community Companions serves to tackle the anxiety and social isolation that many older people face when returning home from hospital. We are currently recruiting for Community Companions – if you are interested in finding out more, please contact Sophie Vaughan for an informal chat:

Finally, with thanks to the Kingston Hospital and HRCH Inspiration Fund, we have recently welcomed on board Physiotherapist, Brooke Holden. Brooke joined the hospital in August 2023 and her role will help to expand the provision of the Volunteering Falls Prevention: Community Exercise Service beyond the walls of the hospital and into the community, for patients of a local GP practice in New Malden, a care home in Surbiton, and for patients accessing Kingston Hospital’s Pre-Operative Assessment Unit. The expanded service will see approximately 40 patients per month across our local community in Kingston, in which volunteers support participants with physiotherapy-prescribed exercises targeted at improving balance, strength and flexibility and reducing risk and fear of falling. This award-wining programme has already seen overall fitness improvements in 100% of patients who have participated so far.

The Kingston Hospital volunteering community is a vibrant group of over 300 volunteers dedicated to giving almost 1,000 hours of time every week to improve patient experience and care across hospital, home and community. If you feel you could give just three hours a week to support our patients and staff, please visit our website pages, email or call us on 0208 934 3620 to discuss which role would be the best fit for you.

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