Sunderland hospice is seeking volunteer drivers

The region's oldest hospice is appealing for volunteer drivers who can bring their patients in to day services and take them on a variety of trips.

Monday, 20th August 2018, 2:10 pm
Updated Monday, 20th August 2018, 2:15 pm
Matt Blackman, transport co-ordinator at St Benedict's Hospice with two service users.

St Benedict’s Hospice, in Ryhope, Sunderland, has run a transport service for three and a half years and employs a full-time transport co-ordinator and a part-time deputy.

The remainder of the transport team are all volunteers.

As well as needing drivers to operate the vital service, the hospice is appealing for escort volunteers who would sit with patients as they came to and from the hospice for their treatment.

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Matt Blackman, transport co-ordinator at St Benedict’s, said: “Some of the patients can be quite vulnerable and having a friendly face to ride with them as they come to the hospice can make all of the difference to their journey.

“Escorts on the bus are of real benefit to both the driver and the patients.”

Driver volunteers need to have a full, clean driving licence with Class D and be able to commit for at least one day per week.

In regards to the escort volunteers, they don’t need to drive but need to be friendly and caring.

Full training can be given for both roles.

All necessary training will be given. Any volunteers are asked to contact Matt Blackman on 0191 512 8400

The hospice has been based in its purpose-built facility on St Benedict’s Way since 2013. It has 14 beds, employs 90 staff and has more than 150 volunteers.