Daniel Duffield, volunteer

“I am very thankful to be able to share my experiences with other people. You’ll learn a lot, meet other wonderful people and find out about other interesting jobs!”

  • Name: Daniel Duffield
  • Job title: Emergency Medical Technician Apprentice
  • Organisation: West Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust

Can you tell us a little bit about your role?

I come into work, ensure the vehicle is prepared, book on shift with our control room and then that’s it, we are ready to spend the next 12 hours responding to 999 calls. We go to a variety of calls including chest pain, people who are having breathing difficulties, paediatric jobs, people who have fallen over and a lot of social jobs now. Of course, the more serious jobs are still included such as cardiac arrests, people having seizures and patients who are unresponsive.  A lot of the time, we end up at hospitals so that the patient can receive further care. However, with the advanced skills a paramedic now has, more people than ever can be safely referred to alternative pathways like GP’s, pharmacists or given self care red flag advice. For me, the most enjoyable part is knowing you’ve made a difference in some way or another. The relief from the patient and relatives when they see us is a big responsibility but I love it. The most challenging part is accepting we aren’t going to know everything, it’s quite easy to worry about that but every day is a learning day and we aren’t doctors after all.

How did you get to where you are today?

I’m still not at my end goal, but very happy with where I am currently. So after leaving school, I went to college to study Business Management Level 3. I got my qualification from that, achieving D*D*D. I undertook several work experience placements, even travelling internationally to gain some work experience in another country! Although it’s nothing to do with what I am doing now, I firmly believe the experience and skills learnt helped me get to where I am. I then landed a job in a busy hospital, working in A&E doing admin, from there I started my career by applying to the trusts student paramedic programme via NHS jobs.

What did you want to be when you were in school?

I always wanted to be a police officer since a young boy, catching the criminals and serving the community.

Who or what inspires you, and why?

Besides my parents, my girlfriend is my biggest inspiration. She motivates me to do the best I can and I look up to her in a role model manner. The positive words she gives off gets me through work on a daily basis. I am lucky to have such genuine, motivating and encouraging people in my life who will push me to go further and give the best advice.

When did you begin volunteering with Inspiring the Future, and why did you decide to start?

I started volunteering with Inspiring the Future back in November 2019. I still remember my very first event and how nervous I were. I joined so that I could express my passion to younger people and also share some tips being a younger person who is in this job.

What Inspiring the Future activities have you participated in so far?

I’ve participated in careers talks, mock interviews, presentations, group activities and virtual events during the pandemic.

How have you benefited from volunteering with Inspiring the Future?

I’ve benefited incredibly.  My confidence in public speaking and group presentations has literally gone from next to nothing all the way to being able to stand to a group of 100+ students and give a talk on careers events.

What would you say to those thinking of joining our volunteer community? Do you have any tips/ advice?

Just do it. Cliché, but to the point. I have no regrets and I am very thankful to be able to share my experiences with other people. You’ll learn a lot, meet other wonderful people and find out about other interesting jobs! Maybe start off with a smaller event and see how you get on if you’ve not done something like this before.

If you could give one piece of advice to a young person, what would it be?

Persevere. If at first it doesn’t work out, don’t  give up. There are endless times when I’ve thought about giving up, but I’m so glad to have powered through. Things may be tough, but so are you. You’ll be proud of yourself for persevering to reach your goal.

 

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