Volunteer pastoral care companions are being sought by Farnham-based hospice care charity Phyllis Tuckwell.

Phyllis Tuckwell supports patients living with an advanced or terminal illness, and cares for them through to their death, whether at the charity’s inpatient unit, at home or in a care home.

Its pastoral care companions are volunteers who sit with patients at the inpatient unit, providing comfort and support to them and their families, and helping to make their death gentle and dignified.  

Patients may be anxious, distressed, bored, agitated or needing someone to listen. Some may be at the very end of their life, and they and their family may need support.

Pastoral care companions listen to patients and are a reassuring presence at a patient’s bedside. They can give family members a break, build a rapport and be a role model for keeping a vigil.  

Jill Thornton, from the pastoral care team, said: “Our pastoral care companions offer a unique and really important service to patients who are in their last hours of life.

“Being by someone’s side when they are dying, and helping to make sure their last moments are peaceful and that they feel reassured and comforted, is a very special thing to do.” 

Phyllis Tuckwell is holding a recruitment workshop in Farnham on June 20 from 9.30am to 1.30pm.

It is for anyone who trained as a soul midwife or EOL doula, or worked as a healthcare professional in an end of life or palliative care setting.  

Following the workshop, successful candidates will be offered a 12-month fixed term placement. They must attend training on July 3, 4 and 6, plus additional computer and safeguarding training at a later date, and regular supervision sessions.

This voluntary role comprises a minimum of one shift of 5pm to 8pm per month on a mutually agreed date. It is based at Phyllis Tuckwell’s ten-bed inpatient unit, located at Kings Lodge care home in Camberley until Phyllis Tuckwell’s new Farnham hospice building opens in 2026. 

Call 01252 729400 or email [email protected] for a workshop application form by June 7.