NHS trust putting itself at forefront of global volunteering

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Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has secured £25,000 to further expand on its award-winning international volunteering work.

The Trust, which is one of the country’s top organisations for developing international links, received the funding from the Academic Health Science Network for North East and North Cumbria (AHSN NENC) to develop an online resource for NHS staff volunteering abroad.

The website aims to encourage more NHS staff to volunteer by sharing practical information, updates on developments at a national level, the ability to connect with other like-minded local volunteers as well as acting as a platform for volunteers to share experiences.

In addition, the team is also planning to organise a regional global health conference next year to celebrate the ongoing work around international health links in the North East.

Brenda Longstaff, head of international partnerships at Northumbria Healthcare, said: “The project gives us an opportunity to look across the whole of the North East and North Cumbria area and connect with other people who are doing international work in order for us to come together to share best practice and learn from each other. It will also enable us to celebrate the achievements of people for their work overseas and how this benefits the local NHS.”

The funding has allowed a member of staff to be employed at the Trust, whose international work over 15 years has included establishing a long-lasting connection with Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre.