Rachel Kelly, Volunteer
I started volunteering at Watford General Hospital because I wanted to see if a career in health and social care was for me and I didn’t have much experience in the sector or know exactly what area I wanted to go into.
Volunteering on Oxhey ward gave me the opportunity to support and learn from the multidisciplinary team and learn in greater depth what their roles entail. The team was very warm, welcoming and grateful to the volunteers. They took the time to answer all of my questions and explain things to me.
My experience volunteering on the ward helped me to get a role caring within the community which then led me to secure a role as a Health Care Assistant with the hospital trust. Whilst waiting to start my job at the hospital I continue to volunteer, which has helped me to become comfortable within my new work environment and get to know many members of staff before starting. As our volunteer roles changed to respond to the needs of the COVID-19 outbreak I had the opportunity to visit and volunteer on many other wards which again has helped to educate me about specialities and teams I was previously unaware of.
For me, volunteering has been an essential first step in transitioning to the health and social care sector and also a rewarding and enjoyable experience. I would highly recommend that anyone considering a career in this sector does some volunteering first, as getting first hand experience within the environment is the best way to see if something is really for you and may open your eyes to roles you didn’t even know existed.