During this extremely challenging time, a number of staff members across Grŵp Llandrillo Menai are volunteering to help in whatever way they can, whether that be sewing scrubs or printing parts to make protective visors.
Three such members from the Grŵp's Coleg Menai are also doing their bit to support those unfortunate enough to be ill at this time, by recording radio shows in their own living rooms, which are then broadcast throughout the wards of Ysbyty Gwynedd.
Yvonne Gallienne, Sarah Wynn Griffiths and Jan Davies have been volunteers at Radio Ysbyty Gwynedd for some years, and so know how comforting hearing a message from a loved one or a favourite tune can be. Therefore, when the Covid-19 pandemic prevented them from using their studio within the hospital and from visiting the wards to collect requests as usual, they had to think creatively.
The team's technical officer, Roger Richards took the first, essential step of moving the studio equipment to his home, setting up and subsequently running it from there. The presenters record their shows using microphones and apps, with Roger then helping to piece all the shows together and broadcasting the finished product.
Volunteer Yvonne Gallienne said,
Initially, it felt very strange not being able to access all the hospital studio equipment - trying to record programmes in my living room hasn't been ideal, hoping the phone doesn't ring or the dog doesn't bark in the middle of a recording! But, because we've all pulled together as a team, it has been extremely successful, and has been very well-received and much appreciated. Keeping the music playing for the enjoyment of the hospital patients is our main priority, even more so during these current unsettling times.
Director of Nursing, Mandy Jones agreed,
The service provided by the volunteers for the hospital radio has been invaluable. The patients are lonely and anxious, and they unfortunately have no contact with family and only limited contact with the team of people caring for them. So to have that interaction with the radio station and connection with their family and the wider community is essential for them at this moment in time.
Coleg Menai Student Enrichment Officer and volunteer, Sarah Wynn Griffiths added,
We're definitely getting more requests, and different types of requests as well - a lot of people wanting to thank the staff at the hospital for the wonderful work they're doing. We've also been liaising with the many local businesses who have been getting in touch, wanting to know how they can help or donate goods.
Patients and loved ones can contact Radio Ysbyty Gwynedd to make a request in a number of ways - through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or their website, or by email, phone or text.
Phone/Text: 07579 062 034
As they are a registered charity, and therefore rely on donations and fundraising to maintain the service, the Radio Ysbyty Gwynedd team are currently organising a fundraising Facebook Festival called Corona Festival, scheduled to take place on the 24 May between 7-9 pm on their Facebook page. Many local bands and artists have already expressed an interest in taking part in the event, and all monies raised will go to Radio Ysbyty Gwynedd and Awyr Las, the hospital's official charity. Details available on their social media pages.