International Volunteer Day: making a difference in the world

Monday 5 December 2022

Today marks International Volunteer Day 2022, where we recognise and celebrate the tireless work of those who give their time to help others around the world. We’d like to take this opportunity to express our thanks to everyone who has given their time and expertise to the RCR.

In a time where health systems are facing unprecedented demand for both our specialties, caused by rising demands and workforce shortages, few of us have many spare hours in the day, and taking on extra work can seem daunting. But volunteering can add a new dimension to your life and there are exciting opportunities to get involved in the work of the RCR and help shape the future of radiology and oncology.

In the winter 2022 edition of the RCR Newsletter, we look at how and why our members give up their time to take on something a bit different. We’ve highlighted some inspiring examples where members explain the opportunities that volunteering presents for both personal development and contributing to society – make sure to read the full articles on the RCR website.

RCR Newsletter

Creating the UK’s first national radiotherapy consent forms

Clinical Fellows Nishanthi Silva and Siobhan Morrison reflected on their experience developing the first national site-specific radiotherapy consent forms. This project brought together nearly 100 individuals including clinicians (both consultants and registrars), radiographers, lay people, patients, lawyers, risk communication academics and nurse clinicians, all of whom generously gave their time. Nishanthi and Siobhan undertook the second phase of the project, and their voluntary roles were fundamental to its success.

Promoting learning and sharing knowledge through our journals

Our new journal editors Professor Arumugam Rajesh, (Clinical Radiology), and Dr Thankamma Ajithkumar, (Clinical Oncology), explain how taking on major external roles brings energy and enthusiasm to their day jobs. They also give their insights into why they were interested in becoming an editor and the role of journals in promoting learning and sharing knowledge.

Global radiology teaching

Sami Khan explains how being a passionate medical educator paved the way to help create Dr Khan’s Teaching (DKT) – a volunteering organisation which has brought free radiology teaching to 7,800 people in 94 countries, helping radiologists understand the FRCR curriculum and pass their exams.

Helping others outside the workplace too…

Dr Rema Jyothirmayi, a Consultant Clinical Oncologist in Kent, is also an ambassador for 5K Your Way – an exercise programme with a difference. She explains how she helps cancer patients and families benefit from exercise in a very supportive environment.

Dr Priya Suresh, our Medical Director for Education and Training, Clinical Radiology, explains how her role at the Commonwealth Games offering expertise as an MSK radiology consultant, working with national team coaches and doctors from different countries, has been an invaluable experience. Professor Gina Allen also shares her thoughts – both good and bad – on volunteering as part of a major sporting event.

There are many ways in which you can voluntarily contribute to the RCR. We actively seek the help and support of our members, other healthcare professionals and the public, as we work to improve healthcare worldwide through education, training and improving clinical quality.

Please see current opportunities to get involved with the RCR