Sara volunteers in our Oxted shop helping to raise vital funds so we can continue to care for local terminally ill people and their families.
“I haven’t looked back since I started volunteering
“I first became involved with St Catherine’s when my Dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer and spent four weeks under their care. I’d never heard of the hospice before then, but it allowed me to see first hand how the hospice works and the great support that they offer to patients and their families.
After I retired a year later, I wanted to volunteer with St Catherine’s to give something back. I live in Oxted and noticed an advert in their charity shop window recruiting for volunteers. I applied for the volunteer role in 2015 and haven’t looked back since.
I really enjoy working in the shop and the people I work with are lovely too. Volunteering is a fantastic way to meet people, enjoy yourself and raise money for a great cause
There’s such a variety of roles to do in the shop
In a typical shift I’ll get in and make the tea and coffee, and then I’ll start sorting through our donations and steaming clothes whilst, Judy, our manager, prices them, ready to go out onto the shop floor. I also work behind the till when required, which is something I really enjoy doing as my background is in banking.
Our community are very generous and we’re lucky to receive some wonderful donations
I’d say to anyone thinking of volunteering to just come along and get stuck in! Volunteering really is what you make it; whether you’re creative and would like to fit the window, or numerical and would like to work behind the till, there really is something for everyone
Last summer I also took part in the Coast to Coast challenge for St Catherine’s with my husband
This involved walking from the West Side of England to the East Coast, covering 192 miles across 16 days. We met people from all over the world along the way who inspired us to keep going. It was the best thing we’ve ever done, and raising £800, plus Gift Aid, for the hospice was the icing on the cake!
I know that St Catherine’s can currently only care for 1 in 3 people but it really needs to be 3 in 3 people. Every penny really does count and there are so many ways to support St Catherine’s.
I’ve been bringing in donations to the shop whenever I can and so far I have raised £400, so you really can make a difference!”