Volunteer at patient's bedside

Volunteers provide practical help to patients and visitors, complementing the work of paid staff across the Trust. They do not carry out (or shadow) clinical work or do work experience.

From April 2019 to March 2020, volunteers gave 35,000 hours of their time and interacted with over 148,000 patients and visitors. King's Volunteers are not directly involved in patient care but help provide extra support. They come from all walks of life and represent the diversity of the communities that we serve. All are dedicated to making our hospitals a little friendlier and more comfortable for everyone.

Our volunteers are based at King’s College Hospital in Denmark Hill, Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH) in Bromley and Orpington Hospital.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) update

In these challenging times we are grateful to the volunteers who are choosing to support us so enthusiastically. As we begin our recovery, we are welcoming volunteers back on wards and we look forward to having them back across all our services.

Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) there are currently restrictions on who can volunteer. You can only volunteer if you meet all of these conditions:

Please also consider how any reductions in public transport will affect your journey to us.

Meet our volunteers

The best way to find out about volunteering at King's is from our volunteers:

Who can volunteer?

We’re looking for confident and enthusiastic people who are aged at least 16.

You need to be able to display some key personal qualities, such as empathy and the ability to listen and observe. You also need to be reliable, a self-starter, and show initiative and attention to detail.

We ask you to give us at least four hours of your time a week. Please consider whether you can realistically fit this commitment in with your other responsibilities.

Volunteer roles

Meeter and greeter

You will be the first point of contact at the hospital. You will meet and greet patients, family members and visitors to the hospital and help make their visit as smooth as possible. As a meeter and greeter, you have the opportunity to make someone's first experience of King's a good one.

Some of the tasks for this role include:

  • welcoming patients, families and visitors to our hospitals
  • seeking out people who are looking lost or in need of assistance and helping them
  • directing or going with patients to various parts of the hospital, including wards or outpatient clinics
  • giving basic information about services at the hospital, such as parking, shops and cafes
  • handing out relevant information
  • helping transport patients in wheelchairs (wheelchair training will be provided)
  • assisting staff at the help desk to answer queries and give directions

Ward patient befriender

You will work with hospital staff to support patients on our wards and ensure they have a positive experience while in hospital.

Some of the tasks for this role include:

  • sitting with and talking to patients
  • offering to help patients with small tasks, for example if they need a snack or a drink
  • reading to patients and spending time getting to know them
  • giving out newspapers, magazines and puzzle books from the volunteering office
  • helping out at mealtimes, for example, helping to feed them or encouraging them to eat and drink
  • helping patients with their personal care, such as hair brushing
  • supporting patients with games and activities where available
  • meeting carers and visitors, and answering the telephone
  • keeping noticeboards tidy and ensuring stocks of forms or patient information leaflets are kept up-to-date

Duke of Edinburgh award

Duke of Edinburgh - Approved Activity Provider logo

We are a Duke of Edinburgh award (DofE) Approved Activity Provider. This means young people completing the DofE award can count time spent volunteering at the Trust towards the volunteering part of their DofE award.

How to apply

Thank you for your interest in volunteering with us. Applications are temporarily closed while we process a high number of applications.

Please check this webpage from Monday 02 November 2020 for details of how to apply.

Further queries

For queries about volunteering at King's College Hospital in Denmark Hill:

Email: kch-tr.volunteers@nhs.net
Tel: 020 3299 5510

For queries about volunteering at Princess Royal University Hospital or Orpington Hospital in Bromley:

Email: kch-tr.VolunteerPRUH@nhs.net
Tel: 01689 863711