Nidderdale playing its part in the national vaccination effort


The vaccination sites in Harrogate and Ripon have been keeping us all at Nidderdale Plus very busy, whether it is transporting people to their appointments, or providing teams of volunteers to help with marshalling at the site.

Volunteer marshals

We put out a survey, recruiting people to help at the vaccination centres, through our COVID volunteer coordinator network in Nidderdale and were amazed by the response!  Over 180 people responded and we are now working with 70 volunteers on a regular basis. David Bird, a volunteer from Birstwith ,is pictured above.

There are a number of roles that the volunteer marshals carry out, from car park duty, to welcoming people at reception, to guiding people into vaccination booths, and finally making sure people are OK as they stay on site for 15 minutes after their jab to make sure they have not had an adverse reaction.

The day is divided into two shifts.  The morning shift stars at 8am and finishes at 1.15pm, and the afternoon shift starts at 1pm and finishes at 6.15pm.  5 ¼ hours is a long time to be standing on your feet!  But all the volunteers are so cheery and really enjoy what they are doing.  The feedback we have been getting is amazing.  See below for quotes from some of the amazing Nidderdale volunteers:

I’ve met some fantastic people during my shifts, both fellow volunteers and members of the public receiving the vaccine. Seeing family members taking pictures after their loved ones return to vehicles having received the vaccine really brings it home how the pandemic has had such an impact on people’s lives. Being able to contribute even in a small way to such a hugely important nationwide endeavour as the vaccine rollout has been an immensely rewarding experience.  Steve R

I’ve found this volunteering experience emotional and inspiring. From the thanks we receive, to meeting the lovely and appreciative people being vaccinated, the dedicated doctors, nurses, support staff and fellow volunteers. I look forward to continuing to support the local community and this great cause. It’s been great for my own mental health and wellbeing too!

Sue B

I’ve found volunteering at the Vaccination centre to be a very rewarding experience. The amount of thank you’s and other comments I’ve received from just helping people find a parking space makes me realise that no matter how small a part you are actually playing its making a huge difference to people’s wellbeing in these Covid times. Can’t wait for my next shift.

Rob H 

Nidderdale playing a part

What I particularly enjoy when I am at the centre, coordinating the volunteers, is knowing that on that day all the volunteers are from Nidderdale, whether from Birstwith, Pateley, Darley, Dacre or Ramsgill,etc.  It feels like Nidderdale is doing its bit in this incredible national effort to ensure that all the population is vaccinated against COVID.

The vaccination programme is likely to run well into the summer, so our volunteers are committing a huge amount of time and effort to this cause.  It goes without saying that we are incredibly grateful to all of them.

Transport to the vaccination site

We are still able to take people to vaccination site for their appointment and have managed to secure extra minibus capacity to ensure we do this in a COVID-secure way.  So if you are without transport to get you to the site, just call us on 01423 714953 and we can get you there.

Huge thanks to Stan Beer at How Stean Gorge for providing his minibus—and his services—to get people to the centre.  His bus complements our borrowed minibus from Dementia Forward and the 2 buses that NYCC has freed up for us to use from Bewerley Park Outdoor Centre.

Yet another example of Nidderdale –and Yorkshire–pulling together and pooling resources to help in the current crisis.

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