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Ambulance Service Drive for More Volunteers

26 March 2014

Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS) is looking for additional volunteers for its Volunteer Car Service which clocked up over 500,000 miles last year, helping patients to reach their vital hospital appointments across the region.

Volunteer Car Service drivers come from all walks of life and volunteer as and when they have some free time to collect and drive patients to important outpatient and clinic appointments. Over 80 drivers currently donate their time to the scheme, covering over 20,000 journeys each month, but there is no minimum time requirement to get involved.

Jo Halliwell, Associate Director of the Patient Transport Service at YAS commented: “Our Volunteer Car Service drivers offer a valuable service to the Trust, supporting the wider work of our non-emergency Patient Transport Service and helping eligible patients to get to and from essential medical appointments.

“The scheme offers the opportunity to make new friends, learn new skills, face new challenges and gain experience volunteering in the NHS. Many of our volunteers have made lifelong friends through their work at the Trust and list meeting new people and doing something worthwhile to help others as some of the key benefits of getting involved.”

To join the Trust’s Volunteer Car Service, you need to be aged 18 or over, hold a valid, full UK driving licence with no more than three penalty points, have access to a car with a minimum of four doors, be happy to undertake a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and have an occupational health screening.

Full training is provided and volunteers are reimbursed for the cost of miles covered under the scheme.

Jo Halliwell added: “Our volunteers covered over half a million miles last year, mainly in Yorkshire and the Humber but also including a handful of trips to Exeter, London, Guildford and Scotland – a truly amazing result and something that is greatly appreciated by both the Trust and our patients.

“We are aiming to increase the number of volunteer drivers to around 250 by spring 2015 so we can extend the service to more patients who need help in getting around. We’d love to hear from anyone interested in joining the scheme and making a real difference to the lives of patients in Yorkshire and the Humber.”

For more information on joining the Voluntary Car Service, visit http://www.yas.nhs.uk/OurServices/Volunteering/VCS.html or contact the team on 01924 584019 / PTSvolunteers@yas.nhs.uk

Produced By: Corporate Communications Department