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Volunteering

Young patient with volunteer

What do our volunteers do?

Volunteers help us in lots of ways ways. They provide a wide range of extra services which improve the quality of life in hospital for patients and their families, complementing the work of our staff.

How do I become a volunteer?

Other volunteering opportunities

Our fundraising team are always looking for people to help raise vital funds for Evelina London, from bucket collecting to helping at events. Find out more in the fundraising section.

More volunteering opportunities at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust are on the Guy's and St Thomas' website

These include volunteer roles at Hands up for Health, an outreach programme teaching children and young people about what it's like to work in healthcare.

Volunteering FAQs

How long is the recruitment process?

The process can take between six and 12 weeks before you start volunteering.

It depends on how quickly you fill in and return the necessary forms.

It also depends on how stages of the recruitment process take, such as receiving your references and police clearance.

 

Do all applicants get accepted for volunteering?

Due to a high volume of applications we are unable to place everyone.

When we have received sufficient application forms for a role we will close recruitment. Application forms are then shortlisted to ensure you have the skills and time availability the role requires.

If you are shortlisted you will be invited for an interview with the voluntary services team and a representative of the department you will be volunteering for. 

If you are not shortlisted you will also be informed.

Will I be able to volunteer immediately?

No, we need to ensure patient safety so there are a number of processes that need to be completed before you can start.

References

On the application form we ask you to provide us details of people who can provide a reference for you. They should not be family or friends and ideally they should know you in a professional capacity for example employer, teacher or tutor. 

Police check 

All volunteers are required to undergo a police check. We will ask you to complete a form which is sent off to the Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS).

When they have completed the policce checks a certificate will be sent to your home address. We do not receive a copy of this certificate so you will need to provide us with a copy for our records. We are unable to accept DBS certificates from other organisations. 

Occupational health screening 

All volunteers will need to undergo occupational health screening.

Initially this is a form which you complete and send back to our occupational health team. Once this form is assessed, they will let you know if you are fit to volunteer, or arrange an appointment for you if you need further checks.

Will I be interviewed?

Yes, the sort of interview and who will be interviewing depends on the role you are considering.

We conduct group interviews for certain roles. Others will be just one person.

What skills and experience do I need?

That depends on the role you want to do.

However, good communication skills, reliability and a positive attitude are a must.

Is there any training?

All volunteers are required to attend a volunteer induction session. These are held at regular intervals throughout the year. 

Induction sessions run from 9.15am to 3.30pm on a weekday. You will be invited to attend an induction nearest to the date you are going to start volunteering or just after you have started. Failure to attend the induction will result in you being suspended from volunteering until you have attended. 

A local induction is also arranged with the department you will be volunteering for on your first day.

Some roles may require additional specialist training. You'll be told about this if required.

What happens on my first day?

Once all your checks are through we will arrange a start date with you and the department you are volunteering for. 

On your first day a member of our voluntary services team will meet you. They will give you a ID badge and a volunteer jacket. They will go with you to the area you are volunteering to introduce you to the person who will be doing your local induction. 

You will be treated as an integral member of the department you are volunteering for but voluntary services will contact you regularly to see how the placement is going.

You can also contact us at any time if you have any questions or concerns.

Can I volunteer just over school holiday periods?

We don’t take on volunteers for such a short time.

We ask for people who can volunteer for at least three to four hours, once a week for a minimum of six months. This is because recruiting volunteers takes time and has a financial impact.

I am a student, can I apply?

We accept students over the age of 17.

Please think carefully if you would be able to fit in a continuous period of volunteering on a weekly basis with your studying as timetables for students can change.

You also need to consider when you will be available to volunteer as we only have limited opportunities available in the evenings and at weekends.

Can I volunteer if I am under 17?

We are currently unable to take anyone under 17 as a volunteer. This is due to responsibility and legal issues.

Do I need to wear a uniform?

Most of our volunteering roles require you to wear a sleeveless volunteer jacket that you wear over your own smart casual clothes. 

We provide you with this and it's your responsibility to look after it and keep it clean. 

You're asked to return the jacket when you leave your volunteer role. 

Can you give me a reference?

We can provide a reference for you when you have volunteered for six months.

If you require a reference before six months we will consider this on an individual basis.

Can you provide work or study placements?

Volunteering is not a work placement or work experience and you are not assessed; this is volunteering your time to benefit patients.

For work placements or work experience please contact Joel Ryden, work placement co-ordinator at joel.ryden@gstt.nhs.uk or telephone 020 7188 8124 or visit our our work experience pages.

I want to shadow a nurse/doctor. Is that possible?

The Trust offers clinical insight experiences (clinical work experience) to students planning to pursue a career in healthcare. For further information, look at our work experience pages.

Contacts

If you have any questions about volunteering, please contact our voluntary services team.

Tel: 020 7188 8399

Email: 

For questions about work experience, please see our work experience page.
For more information about volunteering at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, including the volunteers' policy, see the Guy's and St Thomas' website.

In your words...

Catarina Francisco – volunteer at Evelina London

"I think everybody should do it. You get a lot more back than you give. I love it there. I get a lot of smiles, and lots of hugs. That's the most rewarding thing."
Catarina Francisco, volunteer at Evelina London

Lambeth Palace Road entrance closed 18-19 November

The main entrance to Evelina London Children's Hospital will be closed from 5am Saturday 18 - 8pm Sunday 19 November and there will be no access in or out of the hospital through these doors.

For directions on how to access the building, please visit our directions page.

Evelina London Children’s Hospital
St Thomas’ Hospital,
Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7EH
Tel: 020 7188 7188

We're recruiting nurses                        

Are you a children's nurse looking for a new career?
Visit our careers page.

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