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By Katie Powell on

Giving back: Supporting the Greater Manchester vaccination programme

In this post, Volunteer Manager Katie Powell reflects on her and other colleagues' work volunteering in vaccination centres across Manchester, helping to roll out the COVID-19 vaccine and make sure everyone gets their shot.

Over the last few months, myself and some of our great colleagues at the museum have been supporting the rollout of the COVID vaccination programme in Greater Manchester. This has been part of the United City initiative led by Bruntwood, to help our city recover from the pandemic.

We have been volunteering in roles such as receptionist, administrator and also as centre marshals. I have met some incredible people during my time volunteering at The Grange vaccination centre in Beswick and I have been so inspired by the sheer number of people that have come forwards from local communities to help our amazing city recover from this pandemic.

The staff and volunteers I have met have been working tirelessly to deliver vaccinations across the city. The shifts are long and clinics start early in the day and go on into the evenings and weekend, yet the energy and support the volunteers give to their roles is inspiring! I’m not sure if our communities realise what a team effort this programme is and the huge operational challenges the centres face in delivering vaccines daily to thousands of people. It is very clear that the whole programme would not be able to succeed without the support of volunteers as they are delivering so many key roles and activities, making them an integral part of the clinics.

As a volunteer I was made to feel so welcome by staff and the fellow volunteer team, my volunteer shifts fly by in the blink of an eye and each time I feel a huge sense of achievement that I have been able to contribute in a small way towards hopefully a much brighter future for us all.

Here’s what two other colleagues said about supporting the vaccination programme across Manchester and Bury:

Samantha Ashworth – visitor fundraiser

“Helping out at The Grange vaccination centre has been a great way to help out in our local community and support the fantastic vaccination programme that the NHS has been carrying out. As a member of staff at the Science and Industry Museum, it is only fitting that we participate in modern scientific developments and especially in this (hopefully) once in a lifetime historical event.

“While we focus on collecting history, participating in history is just as important. I have loved working with the brilliant people at The Grange and will be continuing to do so for as long as they need me. So, if you visit The Grange for your vaccinations, do be sure to say hello as I—and everyone else there—will be very happy to see you!”

Ben Jarman – Prospect Development Manager

“I have been volunteering at my local vaccination centre in Bury and have for the most part been marshalling people around the building, ensuring social distance is maintained and making sure that people’s hands have been sanitised at least once. I have really enjoyed working alongside a friendly and generous group of volunteers supporting a team of dedicated NHS staff who have already done so much during the COVID-19 pandemic. For me, the chance to volunteer has provided a fantastic opportunity to support my local community in a very difficult time and also fulfilled a long-held wish of mine to wear any form of high-vis for any reason whatsoever!”


There is still time to support this programme, as the vaccination centres continue to deliver this ambitious programme across the city. If you would like more information, please get in touch with Katie on katie.powell@scienceandindustrymuseum.org.uk.

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