Joanne & Chris Hinds
We started coming to coffee morning ourselves some 18 years ago when my dear Aunt, Beryl HAND spent the last few weeks of her life, sadly passing away in Willow Wood. We were always made to feel welcome especially by long standing volunteer Barbara Chadwick and her late husband, Cyril, who was the volunteer driver who used to bring my Aunt to Day Services. We were touched as so many people are by the excellent care and thoughtfulness that we as a family received and decided that we wanted to give something back to the community.
I subsequently starting volunteering on reception and have also worked on the inpatient ward when they have needed a shift covering. The staff and volunteers form strong bonds and we are there to support each other. Chris and I have done many fundraising events over the years, including quiz nights at Curzon Ashton, Comedy Nights and more recently our online Zoom Quizzes to try and fundraise during ‘Lockdown’ . We have supported the Hospice in many of their events for example the Annual Golf Day, The Willow Wood Ball, Royal Ascot Ladies Day and this year I was entering the infamous flower festival for the first time, but alas this is not to happen. At least I will have more time to practice.
Keeping it in the family – my stepson, Ryan Hinds works for AJ Bell in Salford Quays and during lockdown the Senior Management there donated a portion of their wages for charitable organisations that have been affected by COVID. I put in a couple of applications for funding and was successful in receiving £1,000 and a tablet which has been greatly received as it means that patients have been able to keep in touch with their families.
It is extra special to be presenting the cheque today for £1687.50 for the Online Quizzes that we have been running as it is my Aunt’s anniversary today and she would be so proud of us.
My other Aunty , Josephine HANKINSON, Beryl’s sister, saw the shout out on Facebook for hand sanitisers for the shops and kindly sent a cheque for me to go and buy some. I have today delivered 25 bottles to be distributed to the shops. She is not local to the Hospice but rallies round her friends and neighbours and sends car loads of things to be sold at our Charity Shops and coffee morning.
We have made some lifelong friends at the Hospice and we truly enjoy our time there. It has changed so much over the last 10 years and we are proud to be part of such a wonderful group of people. I love my role on the reception desk and try and make a potentially scary place a pleasure to visit to everyone who comes through our doors as it can be a daunting experience especially if it is someone’s first visit. We don’t get paid for our role but my recompense is knowing that we are in a small way helping our community and giving help and support.
We cannot now imagine not being here volunteering at Willow Wood as it is a privilege and a joy. We would thoroughly recommend it.