Call for therapists to volunteer at hospice

PEOPLE working as complementary therapists in Droitwich are being asked to volunteer their services to help patients at St Richard’s Hospice.

The hospice currently has a team of nine volunteer therapists and two part-time staff offering treatments including reflexology, Indian head massage, Reiki, Shiatsu, relaxation and visualization techniques, but its hoping to encourage more qualified therapists to come forward and join them.

Moo Barrie, complementary therapy coordinator at St Richard’s, said: “Patients very often have had no experience of complementary therapies for therapeutic reasons. They might have had a pampering session in a spa but the service we offer is a little different.

“The treatments are very relaxing and help patients to cope with their illness and body image. They really appreciate the difference it can make to their well-being.”

Patients are usually offered a course of six treatments, and they can ask to be re-referred, but there is often a waiting list.

Mrs Barrie added: “We can’t currently meet all the demand and would love to expand the service even further in the future, But we need additional complementary therapists to volunteer their help.”

Volunteers need to be members of their appropriate professional body, be fully insured and have three to five years practical experience. They are asked to commit to work at least one four-hour session fortnightly. In the last year complementary therapists volunteered 923 hours in patient care.

Deborah Cook, a qualified reflexologist and has volunteered at St Richard’s for the last 10 years.

She said, “It is a great opportunity to share this complementary therapy with a wide range of special people. When faced with a life threatening disease, as a patient, relative or carer, the power of touch is immeasurable. In my time with the hospice I have met some amazing people, who have shared their precious time with me and hopefully I have been able to bring them some comfort, distraction and relaxation with the reflexology."

Anyone interested in become a complementary therapy volunteer should contact volunteer services at St Richard’s Hospice on 01905 763963 or fill in the application form online at strichards.org.uk/volunteer-vacancies.

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