Selfless junior doctor from Brighton and Haywards Heath becomes Platinum Champion for Queen's Jubilee

A selfless junior doctor who works in Brighton and Haywards Heath has been named one of the 70 most outstanding volunteers in the UK.

Luke Tester, from University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust, has received a Platinum Champions Award and was one of three people whose volunteer story was broadcast on BBC’s The One Show on Monday, May 30.

Luke, 27, works in A&E at The Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton, and the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath.

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He also dedicates himself to more than 1,000 hours of unpaid work a year.

Luke Tester, who received a Platinum Champions Award, with Matt Allwright from The One Show

“It was a massive surprise to me,” said Luke, who did not know about the award until the BBC and Matt Allwright turned up at Amex Stadium in Brighton when he was volunteering for St John Ambulance.

He said: “It was the last thing I was expecting but it is great to receive an award.”

Luke said he started volunteering when he was 14 while doing his Duke of Edinburgh award.

He mainly volunteers for a charity called Together Co in Brighton and St John Ambulance.

Luke Tester, who volunteers for Together Co and St John Ambulance, received a Platinum Champions Award

He said: "Together Co provides support for people who are suffering loneliness. I am a Trustee for the charity and we had 500 volunteers helping over the past year.

“At the moment with St John I am acting district clinical lead. So I'm responsible for all of our healthcare professionals and the clinical outputs in Sussex and as well as being an operational doctor myself going out to events providing medical cover.”

Over the past year Luke has also helped Afghanistan refugees arriving in the UK and trained other volunteers in providing Covid vaccinations.

Luke said: “Volunteering makes me feel like I'm part of my community, that I'm giving back to the community.

"It's incredibly satisfying to see a difference being made, to see things getting better. "

The Royal Voluntary Service launched the Platinum Champions Awards to honour their patron, Her Majesty the Queen, and her 70 years of service.

All Platinum Champions will receive a specially designed pin and a signed certificate from HRH the Duchess of Cornwall.

The 70 most outstanding volunteers have also been invited to celebrate at a special edition of The Big Jubilee Lunch in London on the 5 June.

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