Welcome to our new Young Ambassadors!

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Published on: Thursday 20 Sep 2018 at 08:47

Welcome to Zoe, Theo and Megan – our new Young Ambassadors!

This September, St Clare Hospice is welcoming three new Young Ambassadors to our hospice clinical teams in the scheme’s third year of success.

Zoe Donnelly, 17 years old from Loughton, Theo Hall, 16 years old from Bishop’s Stortford, and Megan Plenderleith, 17 years old from Cambridge, will join St Clare Hospice on a 6 month voluntary placement until February 2019. During the half a year, Zoe, Theo and Megan will experience a unique insight into the variety of roles required to provide the highest standards of care to patients with life-limiting conditions at St Clare.

The Young Ambassador’s scheme offers young people aged 16-18 years the opportunity to volunteer on St Clare’s Inpatient Unit in an exclusive 6 month hands-on clinical voluntary placement. Open to all those who are interested in a career in medicine, nursing, or healthcare, the scheme offers an opportunity to gain practical experience of the clinical world and voluntary sector.

During the 6 months, volunteers will be responsible for vital housekeeping duties within the Inpatient Unit, as well as having the opportunity to shadow nursing staff and other clinical staff. The project also aims to help students to enhance their college, university or job applications, whilst also offering valuable life skills development through direct contact with patients, families and hospice care teams.

St Clare Hospice’s Voluntary Services Manager, Rob Wallace, said:

“We are delighted to be welcoming our three new Young Ambassadors to the hospice! The previous two years in which the project has been running have been absolutely excellent, proving to be an invaluable source of education and insight for the young people who take part. Young Ambassadors are also key representatives of St Clare, helping to show the public and the younger generation that hospices are about hope, trust and support. We know that Zoe, Theo and Megan will be perfect to take on the responsibility of this voluntary role here at St Clare. We’re wishing them the best of luck for the 6 months, and we hope they enjoy it and have fun too!”

Commenting at the start of the Young Ambassadors project, Zoe said: “I first applied for the Young Ambassadors project at St Clare because I wanted to find out more about the work they do, and about hospices in general. I’m hoping to study Medicine myself when I go to university, and, in my opinion, palliative medicine is one of the most challenging areas of the practice. Therefore, I’m really looking forward to gaining experience and insight in the field of palliative care as a Young Ambassador – especially at my local hospice, St Clare. When I attended my interview for the project, it was the first time I had ever step foot in a hospice. Immediately, I was surprised to realise what a bright, cheerful and positive place it was, so I knew at once that I would enjoy volunteering here!”

Megan added:

“The Young Ambassadors project is an outstanding volunteering opportunity for young people who wish to work within the healthcare sector. I’m so glad I applied for the project as I feel really lucky to be here, and am looking forward to showing what I have to offer. I had never visited a hospice before I started my role as a Young Ambassador – I, too, used to think that hospices were just places to come to die, but after learning about St Clare’s care and support for local people, I realised that hospice care is so much more. St Clare is so upbeat, friendly and homely; I’m really looking forward to volunteering here. After sixth form, I had been hoping to study Child Psychology, but after just a few days of volunteering with St Clare, I knew that I had an interest in becoming a Clinical Psychologist in specialist, palliative care. I’m hoping to meet people here at St Clare who can help me to understand what it is like to live with a life-limiting illness, so that I can support people as best as I can throughout my own career.”

Theo added:

“When I first arrived at St Clare, I immediately remarked the atmosphere as something I did not expect. It was one that reminded me of home and not a hospital in any way. It was beautifully clean and comfy and I immediately felt as though I fit in wonderfully. I look forward to starting my Young Ambassadors Project and learning more about how a hospice works.”

For more information on the Young Ambassadors scheme, please visit the St Clare website at www.stclarehospice.org.uk/get-involved/volunteer/young-ambassador. Alternatively, please contact St Clare’s Voluntary Services Manager, Rob Wallace, via email at [email protected] or phone 01279 773722

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