In 2007, each of the local surgeries had their own volunteer transport schemes to get people to their GP appointments. Volunteering in Health was formed to bring these separate schemes together as one; streamlining the systems in place and offering a better service for the clients. Since then the charity has grown to offer a much wider range of services, such as befriending, trips, carer support, memory cafes, and reminiscence sessions, partly thanks to a five year grant from the lottery in 2010.
In 2013, funding was received from Dawlish Hospital League of Friends to work on the ward, supporting clients to have a safe and timely discharge. A pilot scheme was set up at Teignmouth Hospital in 2015 to bring the voluntary sector, NHS and Social Services together to form a “Pro-Active Care Team”. This was a great success and paved the way for the Wellbeing Co-ordinator work which started in July 2016, working with clients to empower them to improve their quality of life.
Volunteering in Health is working now closely with many partners, such as The Alice Cross Centre and Assist Teignbridge, to ensure that every one of our clients receives the right service for them, to help them feel less lonely and more involved in their community.
From a very small team working out of a tiny office at Teignmouth Hospital in 2007, in 2018 Volunteering in Health now has 9 Trustees, 20 part time paid staff, plus 6 Home Help Staff, and 163 volunteers, supporting over 750 clients and carers each year.