Volunteering heroes hailed at awards

St John Scotland Fife Patient Transport team.
St John Scotland Fife Patient Transport team.

The driving force behind a lifeline service in Fife has been recognised at an awards ceremony which celebrates contribution of volunteers across the Kingdom.

The winners of The Volunteering and Voluntary Sector 2018 Awards, run by Fife Voluntary Action, were announced at a glittering ceremony in Glenrothes’ Rothes Halls last night (7 June).

Findlay Macrae, Co-ordinator for St John Scotland’s Patient Transport service in Fife, was delighted to pick up the ‘Mature Volunteer’ award.

Findlay (75) helped set up the patient transport service in early 2017.

The service now sees a team of 19 volunteer drivers offer transport to dialysis patients from across Fife to attend appointments at the Victoria and Queen Margaret Hospitals.

Speaking of his shock at receiving the award, Findlay said: “I’m not a person used to receiving honours or recognition for what I do, so I’m absolutely delighted to have been given this award.”

He added: “Although it’s my name on the trophy, it’s a celebration of the hard work from all the volunteers in the team. We’re pleased that we’re able to make life easier for the people we help with the Patient Transport service.”

NHS Fife Chair, Tricia Marwick, congratulated Findlay on his award, saying: “I am delighted that Findlay has been recognised for the important role he plays transporting patients to the renal units; these are patients who may otherwise have difficulty making their important appointments due to health reasons or transport issues. Across Fife, we are very fortunate to be able to rely on the services of hundreds of volunteers who give up their time to help others. Findlay’s award not only celebrates his own work, it also shines a light on the work of all of the volunteers who give up their time every day.”

Executive Director of St John Scotland, Angus Loudon, also paid tribute: “We are thrilled that Findlay has been recognised for his remarkable dedication to volunteering for St John Scotland. As a charity, we rely on volunteers like Findlay and the Patient Transport team in Fife to achieve our life-saving and life-enhancing work, so we’re delighted that his dedication to the service has been acknowledged with this award.”

As team co-ordinator, Findlay is also instrumental in recruiting further volunteer drivers to the project, and didn’t want to let an opportunity pass by: “We’re always looking for new people who can give up a few hours a week as a Patient Transport driver. If anyone is interested in getting involved, I’d love to hear from them.”