This Volunteer Week we are celebrating the enormous contribution that volunteers make to our charity.
Here two of our volunteers talk about how they got involved in volunteering at our carer cafes.
Chris Shepherd – volunteer at the RUH Carer Hub, Café Co-ordinator and Hospital Volunteer
When I retired, I planned to volunteer in some capacity and I investigated various opportunities. But I happened to meet Jackie Maton, who was promoting Carer Support Wiltshire at my doctor’s surgery. When she described the work of the newly established Carers’ Hub at the RUH, I thought that the role was just right for me. Since then, I have also become involved with facilitating the carer cafes at the Angel Hotel in Chippenham and the Chippenham Community Hospital.
I have met some very interesting and inspiring people and learnt a lot about other people’s lives and challenges.
I am constantly amazed by the selflessness of many carers and the willingness with which they sacrifice their own comfort for that of their cared for. I didn’t take on the volunteering role lightly or for the short term. It is a serious commitment. Carer Support Wiltshire invest a lot of resources in their volunteers and it is important that they have the best return possible.
Lee Pearson – carer and volunteer at Carers Support Wiltshire’s Carer Cafés
After going to the Carer Support Wiltshire carer cafe for a while as a carer, I felt that I could help keep it running as a supportive volunteer. I did enjoy meeting up for a chat with a coffee and the cake and felt it was important for the peer support to continue.
I have made some really good friends and keep meeting more along the way which gives me a sense I am not the only one. Volunteering has brought surprising benefits; I have a better understanding for my community and the people in it, friendship which is a very important part of my life and support through a group of people that understand.
Please note that due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, all our carer cafes are currently suspended.