The range of conversations is hilarious!

I caught up with Rachel after she had spent her morning delivering prescriptions for Move the Masses. 

Rachel is a primary school teacher, currently working one week at her school in Wakefield and one week from home. 

She’s been volunteering for Move the Masses since the second week of lockdown. 

It’s really good to fill in some extra hours whilst feeling useful at the same time. I did originally sign up to volunteer with the NHS, but heard nothing, so when I saw the Move the Masses call out on Facebook I was straight onto it. I started volunteering as soon as I could.

Rachel started by taking on welfare calls, she made a lot of preliminary calls finding out what kind of support people needed when they were first referred. 

She was then paired with five people to call regularly - some twice a week and others once a week. 

Some just want a quick chat, others you are on the phone to for hours! she laughs.

Rachel talked about how some people are really appreciative, and very vocal about their gratitude. She reckons the people who stay the longest on the call the probably need it the most. She said the range of conversations she has is varied and hilarious. 

Rachel’s had conversations about what to do with an aubergine in a food hamper, and another about how the lockdown affects dating. She’s talked at length about how to grow vegetables and been through lots of different TV recommendations. She also does a weekly quiz with one of the men she calls. He quizzes her on capital cities (and is brilliant!) and she returns the favour by doing her family quiz with him.

Rachel gets a lot out of making her calls. She explains 

It is really nice to feel connected to my community. I work in Wakefield, so it really works for me to focus on York and the people that really need it. It makes me feel more at home in my own city.

She has also been delivering prescriptions which she enjoys for different reasons. She loves being active and getting out and about.  

All in all, her two forms of volunteering have given her a real sense of purpose.

Volunteering in this way gives me a real lift. Having a good reason to be out and about that benefits others is so rewarding in the current times. I love seeing other Move the Masses volunteers out and about and having quick chats whilst waiting for medication. We are like a little family all doing good.