The desk is used by volunteers who are able to offer a friendly welcome to the hospital, answer questions and help visitors get to wherever they need to be.
United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT) Chief Executive Andrew Morgan officially opened the new desk in the hospital’s main entrance and praised the volunteers.
“Our volunteers are so wonderful and are clearly visible in their bright yellow tops and are the friendly face that often welcome people to our hospitals and are always there to help visitors get to where they need to be. They do a fantastic job and we cannot thank them enough for giving up their time to help others,” he said.
From a smaller temporary desk the volunteers have helped more than 50,000 people over the last 18 months, and the aim is to do even more in the future with the help of more volunteers.
Voluntary Services Manager, Andy Tysoe, said: “We really appreciate the invaluable work that our volunteers do and the difference that they make, which is why we now have the permanent ‘Meet and Greet’ desk.
“Some of our volunteers want to give back to a particular service that helped them or a loved one, while others may have previously worked at the hospital and now dedicate some of their spare time to continue helping patients and their families. There are so many opportunities for people to help and whatever their motivation, we are so grateful and value each and everyone one of them.
“They really are an inspiring bunch of people who make such a difference day in and day out. A smile spreads and I can honestly say that their energy and enthusiasm makes a difference throughout our hospital.”
Lenna Allen volunteer son the desk for one afternoon each week. She said: “I decided to join as I previously worked in a hospital and also took emergency 999 calls in another job. I was used to helping people who were worried and I must admit that I really enjoy volunteering and know the difference that I am making each time that I am here.”
Val Carrier added: “I retired from a job that I had been doing for 47 years and found myself missing work. I missed the interaction with other people and got involved at the hospital through the recommendation of a friend. I get a great sense of achievement, it really is a pleasure to help people.”
Jackie Osgodby, previously worked at Lincoln Cathedral for 30 years and has been a volunteer at the hospital for three years. She said: “I had such good treatment here that I wanted to give something back. I now help out on a Tuesday and Wednesday and go home feeling absolutely fulfilled, knowing that I have helped so many people.”
Brenda Greenwood has volunteered for the last two-and-a-half years. She said: “I am a retired nurse and this is great because it is also good for my own physical and mental health. I go home feeling good because I know I have helped people. I always said that I would put something back into the community when I retired. I came in with my husband for an appointment one day and the rest is history.”
Tony Rattigan has been volunteering for more than a year. He said: “The appreciation you get from everybody is simply fantastic. It really is that little bit of time that we can give that makes such a difference and I would recommend anyone who is interested to get in touch. We really are a great bunch and we all wear our uniform with pride.”
Anyone interested in finding out more about becoming a volunteer at any of the Trust’s hospitals should email [email protected] or call 01522 597838.