Any NHS Volunteer responders?

the groundsman

Active Member
Hi all am a NHS Volunteer responder but I am fast becoming disillusioned. I am wondering what other peoples experiences are.

For me, helping out people collecting their meds and doing a shop at the supermarket is very rewarding. People are very grateful for the help, and couldn't be nicer. To coin a phrase, " it fills me with an enormous sense of well being".

The down sides are that of the alerts I receive around 30% never get off the ground because the people needing help don't answer the phone calls after the 3 attempts. Just over half say they don't need any help after all. The ones that do result in a task can be frustrating because the alerting system doesn't integrate perfectly with the expenses system so the task isn't showing or there is some discrepancy on the date or location making claim back petrol money are chore.
 

acatweasel

Distinguished Member
Yup, I reckon about half of the ones I’ve had were wrong somehow. Felt good about the ones that came off though.
 

Tight Git

Distinguished Member
The very elderly lady next door to us receives a food parcel every week from a local group of volunteers.

We don't know how she got on their list, as she's quite well off and can easily afford to pay for food.

But worse, she's told them repeatedly that she's a vegetarian, however they keep delivering sausages, tins of corned beef, etc which she has to put in the dustbin as they won't take them back.

It's such a waste, as the food could have been made available for those who really need it.

Why can't these well-meaning people ever get the admin right?
 

Tight Git

Distinguished Member
Yes, because the food was presumably donated by someone who wanted it to go to a worthy cause.

Not only is it going to someone who doesn't need help, it's also being wasted.
 

IronGiant

Moderator
Can she shop for herself? I agree, the volunteers need to get their act in gear and deliver vegetarian food but "being well off" sounds like bitterness on your part. Apologies if I'm misreading this.
 

Tight Git

Distinguished Member
No bitterness here, IG, simply a fact.

She adds her requirements to our weekly Tesco delivery and needs no other food.

But the voluntary group insist on delivering a food parcel to her doorstep.

Since you ask, no, she can't leave her house due to shielding (she's 88 and a diabetic).

In any case, our usual bus service isn't running at the moment due to 11 weeks of roadworks, so anyone without a car is isolated until November.

But let's not get into a long conversation over this; I was merely giving an example of a volunteer group doing the wrong thing, despite best intentions.
 

RBZ5416

Distinguished Member
To take this back to volunteering & a word of caution.

I've just discovered, while trying to obtain alternative car insurance quotes, that volunteering to deliver can make your occupation "Delivery Driver" as far as the insurer is is concerned. In my case being unpaid, part-time & not using my own vehicle to deliver still makes me uninsurable. At least with LV, Co-op & Aviva. I doubt it's occurred to many to declare this, certainly not to me, but you might just be invalidating your insurance by not doing so.

Maybe worth a call telling them you're thinking about volunteering & would that impact your policy.
 

the groundsman

Active Member
I was worried about this so contacted my insurer Aviva and they said it was all covered. This seems to be backed up by the FAQ their site

 

kenshingintoki

Distinguished Member
No bitterness here, IG, simply a fact.

She adds her requirements to our weekly Tesco delivery and needs no other food.

But the voluntary group insist on delivering a food parcel to her doorstep.

Since you ask, no, she can't leave her house due to shielding (she's 88 and a diabetic).

In any case, our usual bus service isn't running at the moment due to 11 weeks of roadworks, so anyone without a car is isolated until November.

But let's not get into a long conversation over this; I was merely giving an example of a volunteer group doing the wrong thing, despite best intentions.


I agree with you. It isn't bitterness.

If she is well-off enough, there should be a set infrastructure in place for where people deliver her food and she pays for that food, so that the money can then go to someone who needs it.

We don't need people delivering free food to well-off people from a public-ran service when we have people who can't afford food and need it.

Generally there is a lot of in-efficiency sadly with a lot of these services but I have so much respect for the people that do go out of their way to support people less fortunate or more vulnerable. Genuinely nice, honest people who, despite what they might feel, are making a difference with proper kindness.
 

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