I have started volunteering at a local Hospice serving the community. I would say my first day but it was only a two hour induction but I still loved it. I was placed on the IPU (In Patient Unit) with another lady. Although I was there for only a short space of time I realised this was going to be different from any hospital volunteering. The whole dynamic of the hospice is different to hospitals from the obvious change from curative to palliative care but also how the staff and volunteers relate to the visitors. It was hard to see visitors grieving for suffering relatives and I didn’t know what to say. I wanted to put my arm round them and support them but I knew that wouldn’t help. I can see that if palliative care is a speciality I might consider then it will be something I will have to think long and hard about.
I have also realised that they will want me in the holidays more than I expected. This is a very good thing as the more experience the better but also I might be able to shadow a Doctor which would be a priceless opportunity to have.
The most valuable experience I can take away from the hospice will be the way I will have to learn how to work with those who are suffering from pain or bereavement.