It’s not easy to describe the feeling when you have to go into hospital as a patient. If the initial sense of elation was there, knowing that your health problems are going to be dealt with at last, the feeling sometimes changes as the reality sets in. When the day for admission arrives everyone is so concerned for your well-being, friends give you encouragement, relatives promise that all will be fine, loved ones will be there by your side as much as possible, the hospital staff are friendly and helpful. So as a patient, why do we have this sense of isolation in hospital, this feeling of despair? Perhaps it’s fear of the unknown, or even loneliness. Somebody once described that feeling as being on a ‘lonely island in the middle of a sea of insanity’. No matter how many times friendly faces stop to chat, medical staff to re-assure, our own bedside visitors, volunteers to offer a helping hand, hospital employees to make sure the wheels of industry are running smoothly just for you, sometimes it doesn’t seem enough.
In Barnet Hospital there are people who understand. Sometimes all it takes is a friendly voice or in the case of Hospital Radio Barnet, quite a few friendly voices, and they have been doing that for forty years. Dedicated volunteer members of Barnet Hospital’s very own radio station can be seen visiting the wards, having conversations with the patients and taking requests for a favourite piece of music to be broadcast over the radio. Who would have thought that hearing your name over the radio could be such a thrill?
That’s not all, Hospital Radio Barnet is there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with a variety of programmes to suit all tastes – music, comedy, talk and sport. The station is there on the premises and also ‘right by your bedside’. During the 40th anniversary celebrations planned for 2018, HRB are always seeking more volunteers to continue their great service and help with the fund raising activities.
When the current members of HRB were asked why they joined the radio station, the various answers included ‘to bring a little joy to those who are in need of a smile’ and ‘I like to help people and wish to put something into the community’. Do you need a reason to become a volunteer member at Hospital Radio Barnet? Back in 1978 the internet was a distant dream, now, you might be fulfilling your very own dream, visit the website for more information – www.hrb.org.uk – or email [email protected].