Clubs and Community: Including thank you lunch for hospital volunteers

Alice Wear
Alice Wear

The latest news from clubs and community groups in Dacorum.

Fashion Show

Readers with a passion for fashion and an eye for a bargain can visit a fashion show on April 30 when volunteers will be strutting their stuff and modelling at a special fashion show taking place at Hemel Hempstead School in Heath Lance in aid of Rennie Grove. There will be a chance to buy this season’s fashions at greatly reduced prices.

Community fundraiser Nicola King said: “The fashion show promises to be a really great evening where you can grab a bargain as well as have fun. The clothes are all from High Street stores.”

All clothes are available to buy on the night and can be paid for by cash or debit/credit card. Doors open at 6.30pm for a 7pm start.

Entrance is £15 a ticket and includes a glass of Pimms. A raffle will be held. To book tickets call 01727 731028 or 01442 820732.

Thank you lunch for hospital volunteers

Over 80 volunteers from Watford, Hemel Hemsptead and St Albans hospitals took a break from their volunteering services to attend a special thank you lunch.

The event allowed the Trust Board and staff from across the hospitals to acknowledge and celebrate the continued commitment of approximately 500 volunteers who range in age from 18 to over 90 years of age, that collectively provide more than 1,500 hours of their own time every week.

The volunteers do a huge variety of jobs including driving patients to and from their hospital appointments, supporting the League of Friends tea bars and helping out on wards, reception desks and information centres, for example the Macmillan Cancer Support centre at Watford Hospital.

Eleven volunteers were presented with awards for long service including 95-year-old Alice Wear who has volunteered for an amazing 50 years. And Watford Hospital Radio received a special thank you, with two of their volunteers being given awards for 30 years long service.

Alice Wear said: “My 50 years association with the Hemel Hempstead Hospital League of Friends committee has gone extremely quickly! I am proud to have been part of a team who have secured a portfolio of equipment for the hospital over the years including artwork, wheelchairs, pot plants and tape recorders for the speech therapy department.

“It’s great to see the patients benefiting from our fundraising especially the smaller items of patient comfort which are so appreciated. Little things make all the difference when you are in hospital.”

Chair Mahdi Hasan said: “Volunteers are absolutely integral to our hospitals and I would like to personally thank every single one of them for their invaluable support.

“During 2014 our wonderful volunteers donated a staggering 80,000 hours of time and for that, we are extremely grateful. They help to make the experience of coming to our hospitals more enjoyable for our patients and visitors which is deeply appreciated by everyone who comes into contact with them.”

Next meeting for archaelogy society

Berkhamstead & District Archaeological Society is holding its next meeting on March 23 at 7.45pm in the Old Music Room, Berkhamsted School, Mill Street, Berkhamsted.

The lecture will be given by Dr Sam Moorhead from the British Museum his subject is: The Frome Hoard.

At the February meeting the society welcomed Dr Irving Finkel, assistant curator in the Department of the Middle East at the British Museum with special responsibility for ancient Mesopotamia and the collection of cuneiform clay tablets.

He spoke on “The Ark Before Noah: Decoding the Story of the Flood”, the subject of a remarkable discovery he made from reading a unique clay tablet written in wedge-shaped cuneiform.

It was a story told with verve and enthusiasm that had Society members enthralled.

Good neighbours needed to support isolated people

The Hospice of St Francis, in collaboration with four other community organisations, is looking for volunteers to help support isolated individuals in their own homes, as part of the new Herts Neighbours Network Project.

The role will involve giving a helping hand with a variety of jobs from shopping and driving to light cleaning as well as offering companionship and a listening ear to those living at home with a life-limiting illness or those who are elderly or isolated with complex health needs.

Thanks to a £110k award from the cabinet office, the collaborative initiative involving the Berkhamsted based hospice Peace Hospice Care, Herts County Council and Herts Community Trust aims to connect the community and bridge the gap of social isolation.

The idea is to encourage the wider community to share responsibility for providing compassionate support for patients at home at the end of their lives rather than relying on health and social care professionals alone.

An information day will be held on Tuesday (March 10) from 10am - 12 noon at Peace Hospice Care in Watford to give interested volunteers more information. This will be followed by a two day training event on March 24 and 25 at Peace Hospice Care. A further two-day training event will take place at The Hospice of St Francis in Berkhamsted in June on a date to be confirmed.

Flamstead and Trowley WI

At the February meeting Carol Jones encouraged members to have fun with chocolate.

A former teacher of Food Technology, (the name changed over the years from cookery, domestic science etc) Carol became interested in chocolate after being asked to decorate a wedding cake. She took an intensive course and then started to experiment with various types of chocolate and moulds.

She gave a brief account of the origin and processing of cocoa and cocoa butter, and proceeded to melt some chocolate and to mould various items.

She made chocolate lollipops, (some decorated with pictures) shells, cake pops and Easter bunnies.

Temperature of melted chocolate is important, and she showed the techniques she uses to produce the things she makes.

It was a fascinating insight into how simple chocolate items can be made at home.

The next meeting is on Thursday March 12 at 7.30pm.

Visitors are always welcome.