I am a volunteer for the Denby Dale Centre, driving for the community transport service. The service helps address issues of rural isolation, particularly amongst the elderly, and also provides transport for other not for profit organizations such as schools and activity groups. When the pandemic came I felt it would be good to help vulnerable people who were having to isolate and support them in meeting their day to day needs. The Denby Dale Centre very quickly reorganized to provide a range of support to the community during the pandemic. I was involved from the start of this.
What do you do?
Throughout the pandemic, I have been a driver, providing transport to people who otherwise have no access, so they can attend essential appointments such as hospital and dental visits.
For the vaccine roll-out programme, I have been a driver on the minibus service. This has helped enable people with mobility issues, such as wheelchair users, to attend for their vaccine.
What have you found rewarding or memorable about your experience?
The gratitude shown by the people we have been able to help has been very rewarding. In many cases for the people I have driven, it was the first time that they had left their house for several months. They were often understandably anxious, so it was good to be able to reassure and help them during their trip out. From a personal view, it was interesting to have the opportunity to visit several different vaccine centres. All the sites I visited were very well organized and efficient and showed the fantastic job done by those involved.
Find out more
During the pandemic the Denby Dale centre provided vital support for isolated people. 98 people registered with their Chatterbox check in and chat service. They received 70 transport bookings per month, delivered 205 prescriptions and made 1500 shopping trips.
Interested in volunteering as a Car Driver? Apply here: https://volunteering.tslkirklees.org.uk/job/the-denby-dale-centre-3/
Find out more about the Denby Dale Centre here: https://www.ddc.org.uk/