Sheila - Ashton shop

My nephew was a patient at St Ann’s Hospice, and the care he received was so wonderful that I wanted to give something back, so I applied to volunteer at my local Hospice, Willow Wood.

Initially, I wanted to work in the Hospice itself, particularly on the reception desk which I now do on an ad hoc basis. However, I received a phone call one day from Pauline, who was then managing the Ashton shop, asking if I could help out there. I really didn’t think I would take to working in one of the shops, but decided to give it a go and I’m so glad I did!I really love it!

The shop itself is beautifully designed; it’s like a boutique and we get some wonderful donations of clothes, shoes and other accessories, plus lovely homeware and ornaments. I’ve made some great friends, the team there has really gelled but in a way I suppose that’s natural, we all want to give back to our community.

Some of the regular customers become friends too, we have running jokes with them. One lady must be in her 80s, but has the most gorgeous skin. She claims it’s all down to the cream she uses but won’t tell us the make.We ask her every week, but all she says is “It’s the cream on the telly!” The other week two young men came in saying they were on a charity shop mission. They were part of a stag do going to Spain, and had to buy an outfit for £5 or less to wear out there. Well, they didn’t say it had to be men’s clothes! They’ve promised to bring the photos in, and we can’t wait to see them.

I’m so glad that I’m volunteering for Willow Wood. The care and support Hospices provide means so much, not just to the patient but to the whole family. I’m so proud to be part of the team and so proud that my volunteering helps so many in my community.

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