Open day this Thursday at Sue Ryder Stagenhoe near Hitchin

PUBLISHED: 16:54 24 October 2017 | UPDATED: 16:55 24 October 2017

Inside Sue Ryder's Stagenhoe home. Picture: Alex Masi/Sue Ryder

Inside Sue Ryder's Stagenhoe home. Picture: Alex Masi/Sue Ryder

Alex Masi - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

A neurological care centre near Hitchin is to open its doors to the public this Thursday as part of an open day shedding light on voluntary and paid opportunities.

Sue Ryder Stagenhoe. Picture: Sue RyderSue Ryder Stagenhoe. Picture: Sue Ryder

Sue Ryder Stagenhoe, off the B651 near St Paul’s Walden, cares for adults living with conditions affecting the brain and nervous system such as multiple sclerosis, Huntington’s disease and acquired brain injury.

Staff and volunteers will be on hand from 10am to 3pm on Thursday to give informal tours of the centre, offer tea and refreshments and answer and questions about working and volunteering there.

Stroke survivor Peter Jeffery started out as a volunteer at Stagenhoe two years ago and has now taken on a paid role in the activities department.

He said: “Volunteering, and now working, at Sue Ryder Stagenhoe has played a big part in me regaining my communication skills after the stroke I had 10 years ago.

“In my time here I’ve been involved with things like setting up the ‘Stagenhoe pub’, a centre café and some allotments. I want to help residents have their own life here in their own way.

“I’ve made a lot of friends at Sue Ryder Stagenhoe – we have fun and pull together to make a difference.”

Jackie Camfield has been volunteering for six years and helps out with the centre’s activities.

“The main part of my role is to help residents get out and about – driving them to hospital appointments, leisure outings and more,” she said.

“Next week I’m taking a resident to visit their parents, and in November I’ll be driving a group down to Southend to see the fireworks on the beach.

“It’s great helping people with neurological conditions continue to enjoy the things they’ve always loved doing.”

The centre, run by the national Sue Ryder health and social care charity, is seeking staff and volunteers including nurses for night shifts and care assistants for both days and nights.

Volunteering opportunities include helping with recreational activities, driving residents to appointments, administrative duties, gardening and maintenance.

Sue Ryder clinical services head Nicky Phillips said: “We’re looking forward to inviting the public to our open day at Sue Ryder Stagenhoe this Thursday so they can experience a ‘day in the life’, meet our residents and discover the range of opportunities on offer.

“Experience in neurological care would be an advantage for some jobs but is not essential for the majority of roles on offer here. We do suggest that people should be able to drive or have access to a car as we are rather remote.”

Tickets are not required for the open day. For more email paul.osborne@sueryder.org or see sueryder.org.

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