Journeys to Health was a collaborative initiative founded in 2007 by thinkpublic and UK volunteering charity TimeBank. Its vision was to design innovative volunteering opportunities in the UK health sector.
Extensive online and offline research captured public opinions surrounding health sector volunteering. This set the foundation for a number of workshops. During these focused events, volunteers shared their experiences, mapped their journeys and identified current and future issues in health sector volunteering.
This process identified what motivates people to volunteer and the obstacles that prevent volunteering. thinkpublic collated these findings and made recommendations through a documentary film and report that were presented to the Department of Health and the Prime Minister’s Office.
As part of the Journeys to Health programme, thinkpublic rolled out Pitch Your Project, a series of scheduled events hosted in NHS Foundation Trusts across the UK. In the format of the Dragon’s Den television programme, short-listed social and community projects were given the opportunity to pitch for financial support. During the one-day events, each group received face-to-face advice from a panel of media, design, enterprise, health and volunteering experts. Aiming to increase the number of health sector volunteers, the best projects pitched at each event were awarded £2000 to aid innovation, development and longevity.