Silence is golden for the staff on Scotter Ward

Sam Oldridge, Lynn Short, Dot Andrews and Isobel Bird
Sam Oldridge, Lynn Short, Dot Andrews and Isobel Bird

Some of the most talkative staff on the Scotter Ward at Gainsborough’s John Coupland Hospital have taken part in a sponsored silence to raise money for the ward’s palliative care fund.

Health care support workers Dot Andrews, Isobel Bird and Sam Oldridge, along with staff nurse Lynn Short, pictured, all from Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust, used their day off to take part in the challenge.

During the eight-hour fundraiser, which raised £1,000, the staff passed the time by hosting picnics in the ward day room and entertaining the patients, who “took great pride in ensuring not a word was spoken”.

Armed with buckets, they also headed into Morton Village, near Gainsborough, to meet with the police and members of the public, in an attempt to add to their sponsorship total.

After the sponsored silence was completed, Lynn said: “I was surprised at how enjoyable it was to not talk for eight hours. The atmosphere on the ward was brilliant. The patients did a countdown at the end and gave us a big cheer.

“Through taking part, we now have a better understanding of how stroke patients feel and the frustrations they must experience when their ability to communicate is affected.

“We were very lucky in that we could write things down. However, many stroke patients are unable to do this.”

Sam said: “The team spirit and support we received was fantastic and we’re over the moon that we raised so much money.”

The ward staff are now more than a third of the way to reaching their £60,000 goal.

Their next fundraising event is an already-sold-out race night on September 30, at The Blues Club in Gainsborough.

If you would like to make a donation to the ward’s palliative care fund contact Marie Walker, ward business support officer, or Sister Donna Phillips on 01427 816542.