A Day in the Life of..

In the first of our brand new features, we asked BFE staff and learners to share a typical day in their life. First up, recently completed learner Andrea Barnes tells us about her experiences in her new role as a volunteer;

‘In June 2013,  BFE tutor Tracy Johnson took our group of Level 3 Preparing to Work in Adult Social Care learners, for a visit to St Oswald’s hospice. At the visit we were made aware of the rare opportunity to gain volunteer experience of Lymphoedema nursing assistant, of which I jumped at the chance.  I attended a full training package at the hospice which consisted of Equality and Diversity, manual handling, and health and safety as well as specialist Lymphoedema training.

Here is a typical day in my life as a volunteer:

8.50am: Drop my two children off at school in Walkergate and make my way over to St Oswald’s Gosforth.

9.30am: I start the day by thoroughly washing my hands- infection control is very important in the hospice environment

9.35: Briefing to say how many people are due in the clinic today, the patients and their needs and details of which nurses I will be working with today.

9.45: I chat to the patients whilst they are waiting for the treatment, It is important that they feel comfortable when they are with us, this helps soothes their nerves and relaxes them for their treatment.

10.30-1.00pm. I assist with bandaging and assisting the patients. I need to be sensitive to the pain and discomfort that the patients feel in the procedure , and I often tell jokes to take their mind of it. After every patient the room is thoroughly cleaned to prevent the spread of infection. I wash down the beds and restock the equipment.

I love to volunteer with this clinic as I love to help people. The amount of experience and support from both St Oswald’s and my tutor at Building Futures East has been amazing. Having the change to volunteer has given me skills and knowledge to compliment my qualifications gained at BFE and I hope to be successful and gain employment as a nursing assistant in the near future’

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