As for many people, 2020 has not been an easy year for Dale Love.
The Covid pandemic forced the 28-year-old to postpone his wedding and cost him his job in the summer.
But after starting a new job as an Ambulance Care Assistant with EMAS’ Patient Transport Services in September he is looking forward to finishing the year on a high, helping to ensure that patients get home from hospital for the festive period.
He will be working 12-hour shifts on December 23, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day, before a well-deserved day off with his fiancé Jessica on December 27, who has also been at the heart of the NHS’ battle against Covid.
Dale, 28, of Kettering, said: “She’s a biomedical scientist at Kettering General and will be working on Christmas Day too, so it made sense for me to be working with my teammates rather than sitting at home.
“It’s been a busy time for both of us - we’ve only got two days off together in December - but I know that, particularly this year, there are people who will find it especially important to be at home with their families so I wanted to do my bit to help out.”
Dale, who previously volunteered as a Community First Responder for EMAS, said he enjoys the diverse nature of his PTS role, which on any given day could see him helping patients home from hospital, transferring them between hospitals in the region or making sure those with chronic conditions are able get to their regular appointments.
He said: “It’s such a nice feeling when you are able to help someone come home after being in hospital. Often, they may have been there for two or three months and they are so grateful to be able to get back home to their family and loved ones.”
Dale’s new job is something of a departure from his former role as Sponsorship Manager at Northampton Saints Rugby Club, but he says the pandemic and redundancy forced him to reconsider his career and he is looking forward to an exciting future at EMAS.
He said: “My mum and dad are both nurses so I’ve always been interested in the health service. This year has really made me stop and think about what I want to be doing and eventually I would love to train to become a paramedic. I feel very grateful, after the year that we’ve had, to be going in to 2021 doing a job that I love.”