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Eye Unit Support Service Volunteer - EXPIRED

Job Title Eye Unit Support Service Volunteer - EXPIRED
Contract Type Volunteer
Location London
Salary 0
Job Published 27 Jan 2015
Contact Name
Contact Email

Job Description - EXPIRED

Thomas Pocklington Trust is a national charity dedicated to delivering positive change for people affected by sight loss.

Since 1958 we have been providing a range of support and housing options, through our centres across the South and Midlands, to help people with sight loss live the way they want to live.

Research is a central part of the work that we do. Each year we manage a programme of social and public health research to identify practical ways in which we, and others, can improve the lives of visually impaired people and those at risk of losing their sight. Communicating our research messages and ensuring they are turned into practice is an essential part of our follow-on work.

At Pocklington we are also focussed on implementing the UK Vision Strategy across London. We are working with the London Visual Impairment Forum, local sight loss societies, people with sight loss and other key stakeholders, to identify priority needs in London. This information is helping us to establish local vision strategies in every London borough, with the aim to improve services for blind and visually impaired people living in the city.

The Eye Unit Support Service Volunteer is a new role designed to provide emotional and practical support to patients attending the Royal Eye Unit at Kingston Hospital. The volunteers will be supporting patients who have recently been diagnosed with sight loss and/or are receiving treatment.

Please note that no prior experience of supporting people with sight loss is required as full induction and training will be provided. We are looking for volunteers able to commit once a week for a half day session (morning or afternoon), for a minimum of six months.

Key Tasks:

• To offer a listening ear.

• To occasionally accompany patients to their hospital appointment and provide a debrief to patients who are vulnerable or alone.

• To provide non-medical information in a variety of formats - verbal, printed, Braille, audio.

• To signpost and refer people to appropriate services, including statutory and voluntary organisations at a local, regional and national level.

• To guide patients, i.e., to get a drink or to get around (to another hospital department, transport home, etc.).

• To gather patients’ feedback about the service(s) they receive and other help and support they would like to have.

• To record patient contact and feedback to the Volunteer Co-ordinator.

Key Skills/ Experience/Attributes Required:

• A calm, empathetic and friendly nature.

• Excellent communication skills – listening and verbal.

• An ability to empower people to make their own, informed choices.

• Reliable, punctual and committed.

• No prior experience of supporting people with sight loss is required as full induction and training will be provided.

Special Requirements:

• Open to volunteers ages 18+, male/female.

• Able to volunteer once a week for a half day session (morning or afternoon) for six months, minimum.

• Both willing and able to travel to the hospital.

• References and a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check will be requested.

• A branded t-shirt and ID badge will be provided free of charge and must be worn at all times whilst on hospital premises.

• All agreed reasonable expenses will be reimbursed.

Benefits to individuals of performing the role:

• Satisfaction that you have made a difference to someone with sight loss by providing invaluable support to them and their family/friends/carers and empowering them to make informed choices at a difficult time.

• Chance to meet new people.

• Focused and supportive training and monitoring programme.

• Development of knowledge, skills and experience which will enhance your Curriculum Vitae (CV) for any future education, training or employment opportunities.

Benefits to people receiving the service:

• Improved awareness of eye conditions, treatment and sources of support.

• Improved emotional well-being.

• Practical support.

Benefits to the Royal Eye Unit:

• Reduction in staff hours advising and referring patients.

• Bridges the gap between clinical care and social care services.


It is expected that all volunteers:

• undertake their volunteering in accordance with the values of the Charity and Kingston Hospital. These values promote respect and safety of service users recognising their skills and entitlement to choice and independence.

• adhere to Pocklington’s volunteering procedures and Codes of Conduct and support the principles outlined in the organisation’s Equality and Diversity Policy. In addition to adhere to Kingston Hospital’s policies and procedures as relevant to the role of volunteers. Full training and written information will be given.

• attend any training required to support their health and safety and the effective undertaking of their volunteering.

This job is suitable for a recent graduate.

More information on the work that we do can be found at:

Hours/days you require the volunteer for:

We are looking for volunteers able to commit once a week for a half day session (morning or afternoon) for six months, minimum.


How to apply:

To request an application pack, please contact the Empowerment team at: or apply online at:

Ref: EXPIRED - SH297 | Published: 27th Jan 2015