Ruby’s story

Ruby is a fifteen-year-old student who volunteers at St Joseph’s Care Home in Coleshill as a befriender, spending time with the people who live there. She visits the residents to keep them company for a while and give them someone to chat with. Ruby tells us what her role means to her.

“St Joseph’s is a welcoming community and there is a strong sense of care and friendship between the workers and residents. I feel like I make a positive impact on the residents as they need encouragement to interact with others and the staff find it helpful to have someone around to help with that.

“Entering an unfamiliar environment and learning about individual conditions was challenging at the beginning. But I enjoy spending time with people, listening to them and taking an interest in what they have to say.

“It can be challenging when some of the residents become agitated or distressed. When this happens I speak calmly to them, ask them what they want me to do and pay attention to what they need. If they continue to be agitated I ask one of the workers what to do and they are happy to help.

“I have learnt a lot at St Joseph’s. I understand how to support residents and ensure they are fine, and I have learnt how to support the staff in their jobs. It’s also taught me how to behave in stressful situations and how to manage problems. I have gained a lot of confidence in myself.”

Operated by Father Hudson’s Care, St Joseph’s Care Home provides person-centred care and support to older people and those living with dementia. Located on the edge of Coleshill overlooking the Blythe Valley, it prides itself on providing each resident with high quality, personalised care that affords dignity, choice and respect. Volunteers play a crucial role at St Joseph’s by putting on entertainment and activities for the residents to join in with, driving people to appointments and events, or simply by being someone to talk to.

To find out more about volunteering at St Josephs, or for information about the care they offer, visit www.fatherhudsons.org.uk.

If Ruby’s story has inspired you to find out more about volunteering, we can help match up your interests, availability and skills with the needs of our member organisations or groups. To get involved, fill in this short form, email it to admin@caritas-aob.org.uk and we will find out who needs who, what, when and where.