The Bell Surgery invited their Covid volunteers who have helped with vaccination clinics over the last 2 years during the pandemic to a party at Leander Club on Friday.
Around 40 volunteers enjoyed the outdoor party in the garden with food provided by Sage & Squash and was organised by Katie Williams, Covid clinic coordinator.
Dr Chris Langley said, “Thank you to all you wonderful people for being so generous with your time since the first clinic which was on the 16 December 2020. All of your skills and the time you offered us could mean that we could run such a fantastic vaccination programme for the town and keep the surgery running at full speed. Thank you to George Clooney and his film team who kicked us out of Upper Thames Club and we’ve come upstream but I think we’ve upgraded our venue! Thank you also to Kerry O’Brien, Louise West and Katie who have organised all this.”
Dr Peter Reynolds said, “Thanks to your help we have undoubtedly made a real difference to the outcome of this pandemic. Let me start with a few statistics that make me extremely proud of what you have all helped achieve. In the Henley area, roughly 88% of people above 12 years old have had their first vaccine, with 85% having had a second and 73% having had 3 or more. At the Bell Surgery those statistics are even better. So clearly despite my pink scrubs and the period of enforced Christmas music listening in the waiting areas, we didn’t manage to scare many people away! It has been so encouraging to see the wide spectrum of volunteers that responded to our calls for help, from car park attendants, to our vaccine clinic welcomers and administrators and of course the essential vaccinators. We have had the most wonderful team of vaccinators including GPs coming out of retirement, dentists, nurses, paramedics, vets and very enthusiastic trained non-medical volunteers without whom the Bell surgery and doctors and staff would have had to set up camp and live at the surgery permanently.”
Car park Volunteer Peter Wilkinson said, “I know Stefan Gawrysiak very well (fellow Rotarian) who emailed me and asked if I would volunteer and I said yes and then my wife, Chris was dragged in to help too. We started helping this wonderful local community over an 18 month period. We volunteered once or twice a week during different periods. Apart from being cold and quite wet at times, we had good feeling of being useful.”
Volunteer Neil Gunnell gave a vote of thanks from everyone for hosting the party and said, “I’d like to thank all those at the Bell Surgery and other surgeries in the area who dealt with the pandemic daily and for taking care of all of us through this difficult time.”