East Devon students on their way to becoming lifesavers, protectors and volunteers of the future learned about the “amazing work” of the Honiton-based Devon Freewheelers charity.
Devon Freewheels Volunteer Dave Cook gave a ‘fantastic insight’ into the Devon Blood Bikes service, supporting the NHS free of charge, when he spoke to students at the Academy of Military and Protective Services at Bicton College, near Exmouth.
Scott Lawson, Curriculum Manager at Bicton College, said: “Dave was brilliant and gave our learners fantastic insight into the amazing work of the charity.
“Our students study military and emergency services and take a module on the voluntary sector.
“It is so important for them to understand the crucial interoperability between the operational and voluntary sectors.”
As part of his visit, Dave explained how the association works for free around the clock, what volunteers do in the community, and how trained riders and drivers transport blood, breast milk, medical supplies, samples for tests, patient notes, medications, and air ambulance service supplies.
Russell Roe, Deputy Managing Director of Devon Freewheelers, said: “Part of the student program is looking at the voluntary sector and how it relates to other services.
“The students were interested to hear how the Devon Freewheelers charity works and how Dave uses his previous experience in the military and police in his volunteer role as Blood Biker.
“It’s great to meet enthusiastic young people who want to know more about the association because they could be our future volunteers.
Mr Roe said the coronavirus pandemic put the charity’s community talks on hold for several months.
Instead, Devon Freewheelers introduced virtual chats for groups and organizations keen to learn more about the work of the association and its volunteers.
The tailor-made talks, in return for a donation, have proven to be a hit with supporters of the association, while raising much-needed funds for the Devon Blood Bikes service.
Mr Roe said: “Fundraising over the past year has proven incredibly difficult due to social distancing and lockdown laws, but the virtual talks have helped the charity overcome some of the these obstacles.
“It has been fantastic to move away from online meetings and be able to come back to the communities we serve.
“Volunteers always enjoy meeting the association’s supporters in person and taking the Blood Bikes with them, and we are grateful to have been invited to Bicton College to speak to the students of the Academy of Military and Protective Services.
- To book a virtual or in-person conference for your group or organization, call the Devon Freewheelers office on 0300 800 0105.