Volunteers play a big part in life at Ridgeway Ridge Care Home, as they enhance the enrichment programme we bring to residents and are a great source of interaction for them. It is also a fantastic way for Ridgeway Rise to give back, as we support local students with gaining general work experience or as part of organised schemes and programmes, including Duke of Edinburgh.
We welcome several kinds of volunteers to our care home, from the local scouts group who support the team at our open days, to working with 'Care Home Volunteers' an organisation that helps match volunteers with residents who share similar interests and hobbies. We also have older volunteers, who offer peer’s understanding and keep those links with the past going.
Ridgeway Rise highly promotes multigenerational interaction which often leads to the beginnings of new friendships. It’s so inspiring to watch communication between seniors and young people, which is why we do all we can to give our residents the opportunity to do so.
Residents share their stories, wisdom, struggles and perks of the old days whilst the younger generation gives advice on technology and the modern world. Many of them do not have a regular contact with their grandchildren, so seeing younger people brings back happy memories and a reminder of that young energy.
Some of our residents relatives have also become volunteers at the home after losing their loved ones, but as members of the Ridgeway Rise family, they have the passion and drive to share their care experience and offer their time to continue to support the other residents at our home.
There are a number of different ways in which people can volunteer. For instance, we have a retired neighbour who regularly brings magazines for our ladies, and a University student, Meg, who has previously treated residents to an Irish Dance performance.
We even have a volunteering therapy dog Cally, who brings a great deal of benefits to our residents, including reducing stress and anxiety, and boosting their mental wellbeing.
Volunteers either visit residents on 1:1 basis or participate in organised, group activities. Often volunteers bring their special skills with them, like Ally who is a great card player and Mary, who loves sharing her historical knowledge.
Volunteers make a huge difference in the residents’ lives. It’s a nice variety of additional support from people who care but do not necessarily wear a uniform.
Some of our Wonderful Volunteers
Olivia is a college student who would like to pursue medical career:
"Volunteering at Ridgeway Rise Care Home is extremely rewarding. Over the past 6 months, I have created friendships with the residents and it has been a pleasure hearing all of their unique life stories. I have completed jigsaws, painted nails, created Christmas decorations, and have sung Christmas Carols over the festive period which they greatly enjoyed. It is always a pleasure to see their happy faces and make a difference to their day"
Annabel has been a volunteer at Ridgeway Rise Care Home for 5 years:
"I have been a volunteer at Ridgeway Rise since I retired from paid employment with Mind. I have always worked with people and felt that I wanted to continue doing this as a volunteer.
My voluntary work has been both enjoyable and varied and has included playing games with residents, taking them for walks around the garden, reading short stories or poems or chatting to them. I visit some residents individually in their rooms, gradually getting to know them and building a relationship with them. I have particularly enjoyed this aspect of the work as you can carry on conversations from week to week and it is like visiting a friend.
Some other residents I chat to as a group in one of the lounges or if I feel that someone would like a walk along the corridor I will walk and chat to them. I have also helped out at one-off events like garden parties where I have enjoyed meeting some of the relatives.I enjoy the variety of the work and really getting to know some residents and look forward to going to Ridgeway Rise every week".
Gabor, is 11 years old and often comes in to visit with his mum:
"I recently started volunteering at Ridgeway Rise because I would like to become a doctor and experience what it is like to care for someone.
I enjoy chatting to the residents, they have a wealth of life experience and interesting stories to share. I get involved in different activities as well; sang happy birthday to Christine, had a great chat with Joe about science and classical music, and also shared some jokes with Audrey!"
If you would like to find out further information about volunteering at Ridgeway Rise Care Home or any of the care services and facilities we have to offer, please do not hesitate to get in touch with a member of our helpful team.