Students speak of ‘rewarding times’ helping out in care homes

The corona pandemic has put a considerable strain on Flemish care homes, also in our most easterly province Limburg.  There several universities joined forces to launch a platform to encourage students to come forward as care volunteers: Student Helps Care.

The platform also provides an opportunity for care organisations to highlight their needs.  So far 37 Limburg care bodies have requested assistance from students. 125 students from Hasselt University, PXL and UCLL have already responded.

Around a dozen students are helping out at the care home in Hamont-Achel.  Anita Ramaekers in the co-ordinator: “They carry out jobs to support the staff.  In this way the staff have more time.  The students are also able to provide a listening ear for the residents.  Residents receive fewer visits, so the contacts with the students are valuable”.

Chiara Derickx is a student of biomedical sciences in Hasselt: “I helped out during breakfast and at lunchtime.  I take time out for a chat with the residents.  Visits are limited, so it’s nice they have somebody to talk to.  You can tell we are appreciated and that makes it so rewarding”.

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