End of Life Companions
The volunteer companionship service does not replace the essential medical and nursing care that patients require in their final days and hours of life, but aims to supplement the quality and quantity of support for patients and their families.
Being able to spend time simply sitting with a patient, talking to them and their relatives can be an enormous comfort and support at an emotionally challenging time.
Following appropriate training and induction, volunteers supporting this service will sit with patients, hold their hands, moisten their lips, listen to their requests and generally show understanding and compassion to the patient and their family/carer.
Volunteers can also act as a liaison between the patient/family and the nursing staff, highlighting any concerns in a timely and appropriate manner.
The reassurance that a trained volunteer is staying with their loved one may mean that an exhausted relative can get some much needed rest or a meal, safe in the knowledge that they won’t be left alone.
Having a volunteer on hand to alert nursing staff if the patient becomes distressed or unsettled relieves this burden from family and allows them to stay with their loved one. And of course for those without any family to be with them, the presence of a volunteer ensures that a patient doesn’t have to pass away alone.