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Ticker Club Receives Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

Newsdate: 9 June 2016

Offering support to heart and vascular patients across the North West, the Ticker Club has received a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

The award is the highest honour available to third sector organisations in the United Kingdom. It is designed to recognise groups that provide a much-needed service for their local community, are supported and recognised by the local community for the work that they do and are run locally.

To qualify, a group must have been operational for over 3 years. The Ticker Club was formed in 1987 to support people, and their families, in our region who are suffering from heart and vascular problems. They provide practical and moral support to all new patients at the North West Heart Centre, based at Wythenshawe hospital (run by University Hospitals South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust (UHSM FT).

Since their formation, the group has raised a mightily impressive, £1.2million, through various fundraising activities. This money has subsequently been used to purchase much-needed equipment to improve the patient experience at the North West Heart Centre.

For the people of the Wigan Borough, they provide a visible presence at WWL sites, having had a satellite group of volunteers, in Wigan, since 2004. Also, two of their dedicated volunteers have established a stall at the Thomas Linacre Centre, our Trust’s Outpatients Centre.

John Pimblett and Alan Baldwin are the two volunteers in question. They distribute information regarding the club and its activities to visitors. They give information out about heart surgery, as well as informative newsletters containing updates on the Ticker Club’s activities. They also signpost people to the correct services at Wythenshawe, should they come up to them with problems.
The strong partnership between WWL and the Ticker Club does not stop there. They also provide patient support to Consultant outreach clinics that take place in Wigan. Every Tuesday morning, their trained Patient Support Visitors will visit the clinic to offer practical advice and moral support to any patient before and after heart surgery.

All of their Patient Visitors have had some form of open-heart surgery themselves and, although they cannot answer medical questions, they can give sound advice, based on their own experiences, at a very stressful time in a patient’s life. They do this regardless of whether a patient is a member of the club or not.

Club membership, however, is open to all patients who have undergone a cardiac or vascular procedure at Wythenshawe Hospital. It is also open to those who are about to undergo such procedures and also to patient’s families and all of those who wish to support them during this time.

WWL Voluntary Services Manager, Nadia Koriba, is thrilled that the club has been recognised. She said, “The Ticker Club provide invaluable support to patients at a stressful time in their lives. You cannot measure the impact that their work can have on a person, such is the support that they offer. I would like to thank their dedicated volunteers for the outstanding work that they do, particularly in Wigan, and congratulate on achieving this worthy award.”

John Phillips, Ticker Club Chairman said, “I am delighted that the Ticker Club has received this prestigious award. This is a very proud moment for all of our members. On behalf of the club and I would like to thank everyone at  Wrightington Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust  who, over the years, has supported us in the work that we do over the last 12 years.”

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