Join us in celebrating some of our amazing volunteers this Volunteers Week!


Find out more about volunteering at The Myton Hospices HERE!


Every volunteer who generously devotes their time to The Myton Hospices makes such a difference and we want to say a huge thank you to each and every one of you!


This Volunteers Week we are highlighting some of the amazing people who enable us to continue providing our services free of charge to people living with a life-limiting illness, and their families, in Coventry and Warwickshire.


Covering all aspects of The Myton Hospices, our incredible volunteers support in a wide range of roles across our sites including our inpatient units, coffee shops, charity shops, fundraising events, support groups and on our receptions.


One of those roles is Volunteer Driver, so we sat down with Martyn, Mark and Antony who all kindly volunteer their time to drive our Patient and Carer Wellbeing patients to and from their sessions in Coventry, Warwick and Rugby, if they are otherwise unable to arrange transport.


All with different motivations for volunteering, they provide a vital lifeline to help people access our services. Find out all about them below!


Martyn’s Story


Martyn, began volunteering in April 2023, six years after his wife died. Martyn commented:


My wife, Anne, was at Coventry Myton Hospice for 12 days before she died of cancer. Myton as a whole was a game changer. It’s difficult to show the impact of hospice care until you experience it. I think we all have experiences, or at least perceptions, of hospitals, and often not good ones. It’s quite commonly a stressful environment. But as soon as we got to Myton, it felt like entering a sanctuary. Knowing your loved one is in that environment is more calming than you can describe.

The Myton Hospices - Volunteer Martyn

After Anne’s death, Martyn knew he wanted to volunteer, but with work and other life commitments, he couldn’t offer the time he wanted. However, in late 2022, Martyn retired and looked into volunteering at Myton.


Wanting to volunteer in a way that showcases his strengths and skills, Martyn decided becoming a volunteer driver would be the perfect fit.


Martyn added:


I never knew volunteer drivers would be needed, but it’s such a vital service for patients. I love driving and knew straight away that I would enjoy it. I like meeting people in small groups and getting to know the patients is a privilege. You get to meet people you wouldn’t normally and they are all so lovely and incredibly thankful for what you do, which is a big motivation.

I was chatting to a patient one day, driving them from one side of Coventry to the other, and they mentioned without this service, they would’ve had to pay over £30 for a taxi which they couldn’t afford. It just shows how important it is to the patients.


Martyn emphasised the importance of volunteering, saying:


I’ll volunteer for as long as I am able. Now I’m in, I’m never leaving! I know that if volunteers didn’t exist, people wouldn’t have access to the care they need. The impact Myton had on Anne and my family is something I can never repay, but volunteering is a way I can start to give back.


Mark’s Story


Mark started volunteering in 2023 after semi-retiring from a career in finance. Realising he had a lot more capacity than he’d been used to, Mark knew he wanted to spend his extra time productively. Mark commented:


I originally signed up to volunteer with Myton’s Drinks Van and very quickly felt I had become part of a community. A few months later, I saw an email mentioning volunteer drivers. I had spare time and a car, so thought why not?!

I really like interacting with the patients. I know they really value the sessions they attend, making it so worthwhile. For some, it’s the difference between attending or not, and I’m proud to remove one barrier to their access of vital care.

This role and volunteering in general is very rewarding, I feel like I am doing some good with my time. Knowing how little funding Myton receives from the NHS and how they rely on voluntary donations, emphasises the need for volunteers and I am very pleased to help. It’s something to give back to the community.

Fortunately, no one close to me has ever needed Myton’s services. But helping now may mean the services are there when we may need them in the future.

The Myton Hospices - Volunteer Mark

Mark encourages anyone who has some spare time on their hands to consider volunteering. He added:


Volunteering at Myton is very rewarding, everyone is so kind and so appreciative of the time you give. The feedback is constantly full of encouragement and gratitude, from both Myton and the patients. It’s very flexible, with easy processes and can fit around your lifestyle. If you have time and are able, it’s such a rewarding thing to do! You get more back than you put in!


Antony’s Story


Antony has been a volunteer driver with The Myton Hospices since October 2023, he commented:


I am a single parent living with a chronic illness so I am unable to work. My daughter is now at an age where she doesn’t need my attention all of the time so I wanted to use my spare time well. I enjoy driving and it’s a skill that can be transferred to help many people. Living locally to the hospice, I thought I could support my community with transport to their appointments.


This flexible volunteering role, providing transport once a week, gives Antony the opportunity to volunteer at several other charities and organisations, covering a wide range of areas, from children’s charities to elderly support, and helpline advice to assisting those with disabilities. Antony really is an inspiration. He added:


I enjoy the socialisation with people I wouldn’t normally get the pleasure to meet. For the last few months, I’ve been driving one patient in particular. It’s nice that we both have the continuity and the chance to build a relationship, to hopefully make their day a little bit easier.

Volunteer drivers provide much more than just a car journey – it gives patients the chance to get out of their homes, have a chat, see their neighbourhood, see season changes and feel in touch with their local community. Patient transport is undoubtedly a form of unacknowledged therapy and everyone at Myton is incredibly grateful for all of our volunteer drivers for facilitating this service!


Find out more about volunteering at The Myton Hospices HERE!

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