Erin wants to give something back as volunteers made such a difference for her Mum

Date published: 04 June 2021


When Erin Bennett’s mum, Hazel Reed, was cared for at Dr Kershaw’s in 2018, the staff and volunteers did everything they could to make their experience of the Hospice enjoyable.

They ensured that Erin and Hazel spent precious time together, creating special memories that will stay with Erin forever.

Three years on, during National Volunteers’ Week (June 1-7), Erin will start her first volunteering shift at the Hospice on the morning tea trolley, hoping to give the same support back to other patients and families that her and mum Hazel enjoyed.

Erin said: “When mum was cared for at the Hospice, the volunteers were fantastic.

"They came in offering us treatments, and with the afternoon tea trolley each day.

"Each volunteer would give up their time to talk to us and they made being at the Hospice feel more normal.

"The volunteers made a real difference to each day and we would really look forward to them coming round.

"They always went the extra mile, offering family members refreshments too as well as mum.

"I’m volunteering at Dr Kershaw’s on the morning tea trolley to give something back and help other families as we were helped.”

Erin is just one of the many families who have been impacted by the incredible volunteers at Dr Kershaw’s.

Volunteers are key to the functioning of the Hospice, and Dr Kershaw’s staff have so much appreciation for all that their team of volunteers contribute.

Now during National Volunteers’ Week, staff at the Hospice took the opportunity to celebrate the hard work, dedication and commitment of their volunteers by taking to social media channels to share messages of appreciation from themselves, patients and their families.

Ken Garland, one of the Hospice’s Well-Being Centre patients, has been attending the virtual well-being sessions during the pandemic, which is run by Hospice volunteers.

He said: “I am so grateful to all the volunteers who have helped me by running the virtual sessions.

"I have really enjoyed them, they have made my life much more enjoyable and have broken my week up.

"Giving up their own time to support us is a wonderful thing, the volunteers running the yoga, quiz, relaxation and exercise sessions have been so supportive and the sessions have really helped with both my physical and mental health.”

The Hospice’s volunteers clocked up an incredible 18,458 hours in 2020, despite the pandemic bringing on the closure of many key services that volunteers would normally support.

Joanne Sloan, Dr Kershaw’s CEO, added: “We can’t thank our volunteers enough for their ongoing support and wonderful contribution to Dr Kershaw’s Hospice.

"During such a challenging year it has been both inspiring and reassuring to know we have such a strong, dedicated team of volunteers on board.

"Thank you wholeheartedly to all of you for continuing to give us your time and talent and for being such an important part of our Hospice community.”

The Hospice and the Hospice’s shops have volunteers with a number of different skillsets, supporting with afternoon tea, as receptionists, retail assistants, with administration, and even have a volunteer photographer and videographer.

If you think you have a skill that could support Dr Kershaw’s, or you want to find out more about volunteering at the Hospice, contact their volunteering team on 0161 624 2727 or email: volunteerdept@drkh.org.uk


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