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The Southern Health and Social Care Trust has been awarded the Investing in Volunteers Quality Standard at National Level for three years, from January 2020 to January 2023.

This coveted award recognises the Trust’s longstanding and positive promotion of volunteering and support to volunteers. 

Assessors from Investing in Volunteers spoke to volunteers and staff, and saw the trusts work in action. 

They are only the second Health and Social Care Trust in Northern Ireland to achieve this Quality standard, which is confirmation that the Trust is following best practice and procedures in supporting volunteers.

Denise Hayward, Chief Executive of Volunteer Now presents the Investing in Volunteers award to Chair Roberta Brownlee. Also included in the picture is Chief Executive Shane Devlin, Interim Director for Acute Melanie McClements, Interim Director for Older People and Primary Care (OPPC) Brian Beatiie, staff from the Promoting Wellbeing Team and volunteers with the Southern Trust.
Denise Hayward, Chief Executive of Volunteer Now presents the Investing in Volunteers award to Chair Roberta Brownlee. Also included in the picture is Chief Executive Shane Devlin, Interim Director for Acute Melanie McClements, Interim Director for Older People and Primary Care (OPPC) Brian Beatiie, staff from the Promoting Wellbeing Team and volunteers with the Southern Trust.

Gerardette McVeigh, Volunteer Co-ordinator said: “We currently have a team of 320 volunteers assisting across our hospitals and community facilities. Each volunteer provides extra support to patients, just as friends or family members might do, making the service users’ experience more comfortable and a little friendlier for everyone.”

Brian Beattie, Interim Director for Older People and Primary Care said: “I am delighted that the Trust has received the award as it recognises the collective leadership approach that we have developed over the years at all levels in supporting volunteers to be integrated into the delivery of positive outcomes for our patients and clients. We also know there is a significant benefit to volunteers’ health and wellbeing and it helps us further raise the profile of volunteering within the Trust.  Achieving the award is testament to the hard work of our many volunteers and support staff, including our volunteer co-ordinators.”  

Accepting the Investing in Volunteers Award, Southern Trust Chair Roberta Brownlee said: “We’re absolutely delighted to have achieved the award, and would like to say a big thank you to the volunteers and staff that represented the organisation to a really high standard during the assessment, reflecting some excellent work that really does improve the lives of people.

“The Trust recognises and appreciates that volunteers support our paid staff and enhance the service offered to our patients and clients. 

“Our success in gaining the award demonstrates that we value the contribution volunteers make and that the volunteers appreciate the experience and skills gained and are motivated and supported to add value to patient and client care.”

Denise Hayward, Chief Executive of Volunteer Now said: “Volunteer Now is delighted to welcome Southern Health and Social Care Trust to the list of Investing in Volunteers Achievers in N Ireland. Volunteers bring so much added value to the work carried out by the Trust and achieving this Award demonstrates how much the Trust recognises and appreciates volunteers’ contributions. We heard inspirational stories of lives changed through volunteering, both patients and volunteers, this is definitely something that we need to celebrate!”

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