Teenager flying the flag for community volunteering urges others to consider getting involved

Emily King, 17, has been volunteering at Bilney Hall. Picture: Healthcare Homes

Emily King, 17, has been volunteering at Bilney Hall. Picture: Healthcare Homes - Credit: Archant

A teenage student from north Norfolk is encouraging people to help out in their local communities by volunteering.

Emily King, 17, from Tittleshall near Fakenham, has been spending her free time volunteering at a local care home.

A Health and Social Care student studying in Norwich, she had undertaken voluntary work experience once a week at Bilney Hall in East Bilney, near Dereham, to learn more about the care sector.

She has been regularly helping the home since October last year and every Friday she spends the day with the home’s activities team, helping to arrange activities and entertainment, while also assisting them with administrative tasks.

Miss King said: “I’m really enjoying my time at Bilney Hall, as it’s helping me gain valuable insight into the workings of a care home.

“I spend most of my time here engaging with residents, learning about what they enjoy doing and what makes them happy. Everyone at the home is so friendly and caring towards the residents. It’s a real team effort to create an environment that they enjoy being part of.

“I’m finding my time within the home so useful as it opens my eyes to all aspects of personal wellbeing that will aid my learning. I’d encourage other students - or anyone who would like to learn more about care - to contact their local care home and see how they could get involved. It really is very rewarding.”

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Miss King, who hopes to be an osteopath after completing her studies, approached the home to see if she could get involved to extend her learning about the different elements of care within the healthcare sector.

Home manager Nikki Shaw added: “It’s lovely having Emily with us every week. Our residents really enjoy spending time with her, as having such a young person here brings a new element to the home, which they look forward to.

“It’s also important for us to welcome people into the home to show them what life here is like.

“We’d encourage anyone who is interested in learning more about volunteering to get in touch.”

Bilney Hall is part of the Healthcare Homes Group and provides residential care for up to 63 people. For more information on volunteering ring 01362 860246.