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Volunteer Services is about the many volunteers who have a role in the Trust.

This page explains more about:

  • The different roles that volunteers have in the Trust
  • The way volunteers are trained and supported
  • How to become a volunteer with the Trust

About our volunteers

We have up to 200 volunteers registered with us. They provide a wide range of complementary services to staff and patients across the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Roles for volunteers are varied and extensive. We have volunteers involved with the hospital library; newspaper trolley; RVS (formerly WRVS); palliative care; MacMillan cancer services; complimentary therapies; welcome guides; feeding patients; refreshments in outpatient clinics; filing/ photocopying/ data entry to help ease pressure on busy admin staff; promotions; fundraising; chaplaincy; dementia care; conducting surveys for the CQC and ‘Listening’ events; help/reception desk; buddy service; shopping for inpatients; hospital radio broadcasting; chaperoning patients; delivering files/items from department to department; acting in educational films; role playing as patients for doctors’ exams.

Our vision

Our vision is to evolve and grow a volunteer system that appeals to the diverse range of people from our surrounding communities and to build a supportive network of volunteers that enhance the lives of all our patients, staff and communities. Our communities are brimming with potential and it is our aim to attract people from all walks of life by offering an exceptional volunteer experience which promotes and celebrates the generosity of our volunteers.

General Volunteers

General Volunteers are the positive, multi-skilled, multi-talented backbone of our service. They are true all-rounders. They can encompass a range of roles and work flexibly depending upon service demands. Their first priority is to ensure patients and their families are enjoying the best in service delivery. They obtain patient feedback by conducting CQC questionnaires, promote volunteering at events, provide a warm greeting to patients and visitors as they arrive at the hospital, keep information racks and notice boards stocked and up-to-date, visit and run errands for patients, help patients choose a book from the Hospital Library, help prepare patients for mealtimes (tidying space, helping with hand hygiene), deliver messages between patients, visitors and staff, act as a buddy to new volunteers, carry bleeps and contribute to the quarterly newsletter.

Welcome and Reception Volunteers

Patients and visitors can be anxious when they first arrive. Our Welcome & Reception Volunteers project a warm, caring and friendly image, welcoming patients, visitors and guests into the hospital and answering any face-to-face or telephone queries. They can work in any public-facing department (Reception, Emergency Department, St Paul’s, etc.), locating information on the Trust system, escorting patients to their destination, helping patients overcome feelings of isolation and anxiety. In some areas they provide refreshments such as tea, coffee, biscuits and toast.

Ward Volunteers

Volunteers greet patients, visitors and relatives on arrival to the ward. Their purpose is to ensure everybody has the best possible patient experience. They tidy notice boards and information racks, patients’ lockers and tables. They collect and deliver x-rays, folders and prescriptions. They run errands and pass messages between patients and staff. They assist patients in preparing for mealtimes (tidying table, hand hygiene), encouraging patients to eat and drink. They also help patients to pack/unpack their belongings and obtain patient feedback for surveys.

Admin volunteers

Admin volunteers help out in busy offices by answering telephone queries, photocopying, scanning, filing/organising paperwork, tidying, filling envelopes, data entry, stapling, transporting documents between departments. Some are trained to use Trust systems such as IPM.


Volunteers promote various charity incentives by answering queries; selling merchandise and raffle tickets; manning promotional stalls; helping with organised events such as coffee mornings, abseils, supermarket bag packing or even being part of the Pink Police, issuing spot fines for anyone caught not wearing pink!

Buddy service

The ‘buddy’ service continues to ‘make a difference’ to Patients’ journey home from hospital.

A very busy area is St Paul’s Day Ward. Our Volunteers are regularly called upon to escort vulnerable Patients home and settle them back home following their surgical procedures (e.g. cataract operation).

Our ‘buddies’ will also collect pensions or personal items from Patients’ homes, go to the bank, etc., and generally ‘lend a hand’.

Patient visiting

The Patient Visiting Service is very popular. Sometimes, our patients’ relatives are unable to visit them during their stay in hospital, or cannot make the journey regularly. Our Patient Visiting Service ensures patients receive a visit from a friendly, caring volunteer. Patients in this position are grateful for the company and for any errands that the volunteer may run for them. This role is perfectly suited to outgoing, friendly people who are at ease making conversations with people from all walks of life.

Complementary/Beauty Therapist Volunteer – Cancer Wellbeing Centre

The Cancer Wellbeing Centre is seeking to recruit qualified therapists. Can you spare some time to help support us? We provide a course of complementary therapies to help improve the lives of those affected by a cancer diagnosis. Some of the therapies we offer are reflexology, Indian head massage, body massage, Mindfulness, holistic facial, aromatherapy, reiki, emotional freedom technique, relaxation and visualisation.

Thank you for your interest in volunteering at our Trust, for further information please contact Maureen Gildea, Cancer Volunteer Coordinator 0151 706 4603 or email Maureen here.

Volunteers in the Bereavement Office

Volunteers answer telephones, make appointments for relatives to collect Death Certificates and belongings, make refreshments and, if requested, make arrangements for the bereaved to view their loved ones. Volunteers find the role very rewarding in helping people through a very difficult time.

Volunteers also deliver health records, belongings and bereaved relatives up to the Bereavement office.

Chaplaincy Volunteers

Chaplaincy volunteers provide holistic spiritual support for patients, relatives and staff. They take queries and answer telephone calls, recording and evidencing referrals and visits for the Chaplaincy team. They arrange promotional materials for the Chaplaincy and ensure the working environment is organised and tidy. They promote an inclusive, multi-faith environment.

Trolley services

The Newspaper Trolley Service is extremely popular with patients. It is taken out every weekday with every ward visited. This service helps ward-bound patients by providing regular, fresh news to all patients and is especially crucial to those unable to leave their beds or wards. They must check stock levels; be comfortable handling cash, providing the correct change to patients, ensuring the float balances at the end of their shift. They keep the trolley clean and tidy, reporting any faults.

The Patients’ Library visits inpatient wards at least once a week. WH Smith donated a new range of best-selling books and our many visitors donate books to us. There is always a book to suit every taste. Volunteers will do their best to find the most appropriate match for a patient’s needs.

The Provisions Trolley (provided by RVS) is very popular and goes out daily. Every ward is visited at least once a week. Again, if patients miss the trolley or require provisions, staff can bleep the volunteers to purchase items for patients.

There are also times when patients need shopping and items from outside of the Trust. The volunteers are more than willing to lend a hand.

Palliative Care Volunteer

These important volunteers provide support to patients who are nearing the end of life. Volunteers sit with the dying patient, hold their hand, chat (if they can) and pass messages to staff or relatives. They also spend time with the patient's family members, providing support and someone to talk to. Extensive training is given by the superb Palliative Care Team.

Clinical Research Unit (CRU) Chaperone/Volunteer

The main function is to greet patients on arrival and guide them to their destination, making drinks and snacks where appropriate. CRU Volunteers obtain patient feedback, answer telephones, transfer calls, take messages. They also observe processing, logging, storage and shipment of samples.

Chaperone Volunteer

Volunteers accompany patients during scans (e.g. Ultrasound scan) to ensure the patient is not alone with the operator. They assist the healthcare professional bring the patient into/out of the room and help the patient to arrange their clothes. They escort patients to their destination and help patients overcome feelings of isolation and anxiety.

Volunteering at the Trust

Contact us

Volunteer Management
Angela Karakus: Volunteer Services Manager
Jack Hont: Volunteer Services Facilitator
Email volunteer management here
0151 706 3170

Other information

A volunteer can be reached directly on Bleeps 4788 and 4787

The bleep system also applies if patients wish to buy newspapers, magazines, sweets, etc.

Volunteering with us