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Lincoln resident is UK’s longest serving NHS volunteer

A Lincoln resident is believed to be the country’s longest serving NHS volunteer services manager, with 30 years in the role.

Rob Kendrick was one of the first group of volunteer services staff employed by the NHS in 1984 to help organise the former 400-bed Rauceby Hospital near Sleaford.

Rob, who is trained as an interior designer, still works for the same service, but now manages a team of 100 volunteers around the county for Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

He has helped tackle the stigma attached to mental health illnesses, break down barriers between hospitals and the community, and was one of the first to adopt animal therapy to those with mental health conditions.

He helped introduce the national Pets As Therapy charity to the area, which still operates today.

His 30-year experience also coincides with the Peal Anniversary (30th) of national Volunteers Week, which runs from June 1-7.

He said: “It’s been a rewarding time and I’ve worked with some fantastic volunteers.

“It is a unique job in the NHS with the opportunity to do some really creative work. Every year sees a new project involving volunteers helping improve the quality of life for our service users.

“It has been particularly rewarding to see former patients come through as volunteers and then move onto new careers.”