Today we’re taking a look at the important role of our drivers, who do a really valuable job and open up our services to a whole lot of patients who wouldn’t otherwise be able to access them.
David Monk, 77, attends Day Therapy every two weeks. He’s driven by volunteer driver Alan Wilson.
“I drove myself in, to start with, but I didn’t feel safe. I have metastatic prostate cancer and I can drive but need to be careful as I get tired and I can’t concentrate well. I asked if I could get a lift and Alan came along. He comes and greets me and helps me get in the car. We have a good chat about the Foxes on the way. He’s a good chap and we get on really well.
“I love coming to Day Therapy, it’s really sociable and I talk to lots of people. It is quite tiring so it’s a real relief that I don’t have to think about how I’m getting home. When I drove myself it used to impact on my day, worrying about driving home. Now Alan drives me, I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”
Alan Wilson, 73, has been a volunteer driver at LOROS since 2017.
He said: “I enjoy volunteering so much. It gives me a real satisfaction. It’s so important. Patients are often nervous so I try hard to put them at ease. It’s important to talk –if you just sit there and drive, you may as well be a bus driver. For them I’m the face of LOROS.
“Some people need a bit of teasing out. So I ask them where in Leicester they’re from. ‘Are you an Oadby boy?’ I find it easy to chat so it’s second nature to me. I don’t have a quiet moment. You soon learn that people are quite ill but they’re still people, and they like to talk. Chatting away, cheering them up or distracting them from anxiety, it makes it feel worth it.
“I do all sorts of driving – collecting samples, fetching donated flowers, getting medication, running errands as well as driving patients. I’d really recommend it.
“I get a lot of appreciation from patients and from LOROS. I guess my volunteering can have a big impact on patients. It’s only driving but actually it’s loads more than that. It’s the difference between being house-bound and being able to come here and enjoy themselves.”
Thank you Alan – you do a vital job for us and our patients.
We’re always looking for volunteer drivers, so if you can spare a few hours each week to do something which has a MASSIVE impact on our patients, we’d love to hear from you! Find out more about how you can support LOROS through volunteering at: loros.co.uk/volunteer