The London Ambulance Service has taken the opportunity of Volunteer Recognition Day to thank all those who have tirelessly volunteered with them during the pandemic.
Working alongside full-time members of staff, volunteer responders include Emergency Responders and Community First Responders.
Emergency Responders are trained by the London Ambulance Service and respond to the most serious 999 calls in full uniform and in liveried vehicles using both blue lights and sirens.
Community First Responders are volunteers trained by St John Ambulance and London Ambulance Service and are sent from their home, work or elsewhere in the community to patients in their local area to give first aid and care prior to the arrival of an ambulance.
During the pandemic, the role of these volunteers has been expanded to help in other areas such as in testing frontline members of staff. They also played a central role in supporting ‘swab’ testing by coordinating phone booking lines and delivering tests to staff and volunteers who were isolating and couldn’t travel to pick up a test kit.
In the past year, these responders have volunteered nearly 30,000 hours and responded to nearly 10,000 incidents.
Antony Tiernan, from the London Ambulance Service said: “As Londoners will know, this past year has been one of the most challenging in our history, but what they might not know is just how significant a role our volunteers have played in the response to the COVID-19 pandemic – as they have in many other areas of the NHS.
“Volunteer Recognition Day gives us another opportunity to pay tribute to our wonderful volunteers for everything they have done for us and for Londoners and what they continue to do each and every day.”
To find out more and get involved yourself, visit the London Ambulance Service website.