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Debbie Flint

Volunteering and the Feel Good Factor
30 March 2021

a cake gift at the mass vaccine centre a cake gift at the mass vaccine centre

Regulars will know that I've been volunteering at the mass vaccination centre at Epsom Grandstand weekly since the end of January. And this week I got contacted by a reporter to see if he could put my story in his news piece, and it's out this Saturday apparently*. My sis was the one who got me into it, having gone there herself after registering and being called in to help. The next week they needed people so I trekked along with her and got the Astra Zeneca for my sins as they had one left over at the end of the session. Since then I've done my four hours a week on a Tuesday late afternoon and have loved every minute.

I'm mainly wiping down chairs and guiding people to the right place to wait , to see the nurse for the jab, or to sit for 15 mins afterwards. Sometimes I go wipe down the staffroom (pic) and have to resist the lovely treats kind people bring for the staff, volunteers and nurses. People really are so thoughtful. The homemade cakes go down the best! 

Nicest of all though is the feeling of having helped out and done my bit. People are so grateful, 'are you a volunteer?' they ask. 'Oh thank you so much, for what you do.' It warms the cockles it really does. There's a genial atmosphere and one that's not unlike the feeling of when you are queueing at the start of a vacation or some such. We all help each other out too, taking breaks when needed and finding new cameraderie with family and friends who have stepped up to help the NHS staff deliver these life-changing vaccinations. My brother was also helping and got one, and mum was delighted to have both of hers recently, once she got called up, she came along on a day when we were there. Team Linda expanded and the Rota Central roster was filled!


I have to make a point which I know some won't agree with, but I'm going to see what you think. Well done Government for having the forethought to invest in the AZ vaccine production, for taking a punt and ordering so many doses from several sources, and for scaling up everything so fast - including helping the NHS get it done, even recruiting help from the army etc. It could have been so different - and I feel for my pals in the EU at the moment. It does make me smile though, when certain left-leaning friends will state loudly that they are so grateful for the vaccination, yet say they hate the Tories in the same breath. Or those who say 'well done NHS' without recognising that it was Boris's team who made it all possible in the first place. There are local and mayoral elections coming up in May and it'll be interesting to see if the silent majority who gave him his 80 majority in the Commons, stand up to be counted again and make it a big showing for the Conservatives. Personally I hope so, and will be delivering leaflets in Banstead for the local County councillor candidate and continuing my distanced online support for my association in Devon... watch this space...


I must say it's been weird living an alternative life here in Surrey. Especially with the recent nice weather. My new flat has a super balcony and spending time on it has been fab. I'm even weeding a little section on the edge of the lawns below, in case I'm able to plant some bulbs and beat the weeds. Although it looks right now as though the weeds will win! Devon has some fab holiday let bookings in the diary this summer - it's full, so selling it is on hold for now. But I hope to get back down after Easter and see some of my friends before the holiday season begins again. I'm going to run half a dozen retreats this year too - ones that are postponed from last year and possibly one or two others, but no major new ones till the dust has settled a bit more.


In the meantime, Netflix has become my mainstay and I'm ploughing through catch up TV at a rate of knots. At time of writing I'm thoroughly into 'Grace and Frankie' - Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin knocking it out of the park as a latter-day 'Odd Couple' whose husbands leave them for each other. So I'm off to watch another right now, in the middle of my 11 days annual leave. Well, I did an extra day in the middle of my break, sickness cover, but you know what I mean!

I do hope you get the vaccine and it all goes well. The country is over half vaccinated now, with second doses accelerating and the light at the end of the lockdown tunnel is getting brighter and brighter! 

~Have a lovely week and a super Easter.

Best wishes



ps don't forget to read my QVC blogs each Friday afternoon on - stories plus of course, follow my social media - including the live video each Thursday night - search #ThursdayBantz !

(*The Sun is doing a piece on volunteers and the reporter contacted me saying his wife watches QVC so hello to Sue and Mike Ridley! It's in the ad as well, going out Saturday.). 

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