Compassion and Care for all
Wellbeing and Wildlife Rescue
Our wellbeing officers are here to help and support you
Rescuing wildlife is such a fulfilling and rewarding process. It can however at times be emotionally challenging and in order to provide the best care possible it is important to Severn Wildlife Rescue to also care for the mental and physical health of each person involved in our organisation.
Whether you are struggling and need to be referred to a qualified specialist or just need a friend to chat to, our wellbeing officers are here to help and support you. Volunteers can request Charley or Max as their assigned wellbeing officer and will have the opportunity to fill out a wellbeing questionnaire.
For those of you I haven't met, my name is Charley. I've worked with as a bat carer for three years and Hedgehog Rescue Chipping Sodbury for over a year.
I've been an ambassador for mental health and proper welfare for a long time and have experienced my fair share of difficulties with both these things. At previous jobs I have been a point of contact for welfare and wellbeing issues and actively enjoy being in this role.
My aim is to ensure everyone is happy and comfortable within their roles and with each other. We are all working within a very demanding and emotionally taxing field and I hope to enable you and help you all to cope with this and for us all to be the best wildlife carers we can be.
Volunteer Welfare Coordinator
My name is Max Alwyn, and my role in Severn Wildlife Rescue is wildlife coordinator and welfare officer.
II have always wanted to help people on a personal level, initially studying psychology and sociology at college, with hope of working in therapy.
On a more personal level, due to my own mental health issues, I have lots of experience with different treatments and therapies, and am more than happy to help people on a more tailored approach with advice for ways of living/dealing with mental health issues. I primarily choose to listen rather than lecture, as I have learnt this is usually the first thing people desire, a friendly ear.
Wildlife & Volunteer Welfare Coordinator
One to One's
Charley Bird and Max Alwyn will be presenting a talk introducing themselves, the services they can provide our volunteers and some of mental health issues that can come up when rehabilitating wildlife and how best to tackle this.
Meditation can reduce stress and anxiety, it can boost your brain power and enhance your focus. It delays the onset of degenerative mental disorders. As time progresses, the brain undergoes physiologic changes that can lead to the development of certain mental disorders. Although they cannot be avoided, you can delay their onset by performing meditation on a frequent basis. It brightens your disposition, and help prevent you from feeling emotions such as sadness and loneliness. meditation is effective in preventing depression-related illnesses. Read more here - Five Mental Benefits of Meditation - Examined Existence
Speaking to one person over zoom or on a phone call can help prevent anxiety and stress, especially concerning wildlife. It is so important to communicate with one another over any issue.
Wildlife rehabilitation can be so rewarding but also incredibly challenging, 50% of our patients will die and often it can be overwhelming especially over the winter months, where wildlife cannot be released and all you see is sick or dying individuals. It can be a lot to take on and we want to make sure we have the resources and the people to support our volunteers through this.
Although this may have differing effects dependant on the person, by placing the brain in a natural state of heightened awareness and deep relaxation, hypnotherapy can improve mental health. It does this by helping an individual understand and change the patterns of behaviour that trigger stress and anxiety. We hope that this will also help our volunteers if they need this service. We have the contacts to provide this for our volunteers if they request it with our Welbeing Officers.
Mental Wellbeing Resources
Our Welfare Blog post
This blog post is written about grief and guilt when caring for wildlife from the opinion of one of our cofounders Ashley. We hope our volunteers find it useful! Wildlife and Well being - finding the balance (severnwildliferescue.org)