We have been asked several times what the process is to become a Hospitals Ministry Visitor and so we thought we would answer it here for anyone who is interested in the role. Please feel free to contact the team using the contact form here if you have any further questions.
To be a Pagan Federation Hospital Ministry Visitor You must: –
– Complete and return a Application form available from the Hospital Ministry Manager (HMM)
– Provide a copy of a current voluntary or paid up DBS and all relevant qualifications
– Attend an interview with the HMM
– Complete the training provided by the HMM.
This process has been put in place for 2 reasons: Firstly, it is to safeguard the patient, the hospital ward staff, the chaplaincy department in the hospital , you the volunteer and The Pagan Federation. Secondly, it would be amazing to be a part of the Healthcare Interfaith Community, which we – Pagans – are not at present and we can only be accepted to sit around their table and be integrated as part of their community if we have the above in place and prove that we only send those of good standing and who have completed a process into hospitals with some training and checks in place.
It is I feel really important that we the Pagan Federation and pagans are accepted around this interfaith table as it would give us so much more credibility with the Chaplaincy departments in hospitals as they have already done so much to make other faiths/beliefs accepted outside of the tradition Christian Chaplain that still dominate hospitals. It would give us so much more access to training within the NHS as they provide a great deal, particularly the interfaith training.
I have been accepted and am presently completing some of their training but that was as an exception rather than a rule as they did not have NHS funding at the time, which they do not have a limited amount of. It also means I can disseminate more training down to my team.
What you get for being in the Pagan Federation Hospital Ministry team:
– The support of the Pagan Federation and all the knowledge.
– Training from HMM and potentially in the future from the Healthcare Interfaith Community.
– You are supported within the hospital by the HMM, you and the chaplaincy department have access to training from HMM about paganism and chaplaincy work.
– You will also receive regular reflective supervision – this is about checking in on you and ensuring that you are ok, celebrating the highs and supporting you through any difficulties. Reflecting on your visits so that you can grow as a Hospital Visitor
– By arrangement you have 24 hour support from myself if you need to debrief after a difficult visit, if you are preparing to sit with someone who wishes for a vigil through death or any other difficulties and afterwards.
HMM will write to the Chaplaincy department and Governors to build that bridge to ensure that the Hospital and Chaplaincy department are on board to receive a pagan volunteer and initiate the building of the relationship between the PF/Hospital/Pagan volunteer.
If you have not been through this process and are currently volunteering in hospitals, then you are there as an independent visitor and your agreement is with the hospital only. You are Not a Pagan Federation representative and as such can not state that you are until you have been through the above process, even if you have another position within the PF or in Prisons. For us to gain this good standing and be accepted in the Healthcare Interfaith Community it is really important that the above is followed.
Please also note if an application is sent out and it is not returned within 3 months it will be assumed that the individual is no longer interested.
I hope this helps to clarify the process and answer any questions you might have.
Pagan Federation Hospitals Ministry Manager