"I felt inspired by what was going on here and wanted to contribute towards it."
According to Hospice UK, more than 125,000 volunteers support 220 hospices, helping to deliver quality care.
They include 73 volunteers at Francis House. Volunteers range in ages from 20 to 92 and provide more than 275 working hours a week.
The Greater Manchester chairty that supports families from across the north west including Oldham, Trafford, Bury, Stockport and Manchester employs only one chef. Thirty three volunteers help with kitchen duties and preparing and serving meals.
After decades of dedicated service three kitchen volunteers retired. The charity recognises the enormous contribution made by the volunteers and is seeking new recruits to help in the kitchen at the Didsbury hospice.
Sue Altree, a retired teacher from Cheadle Hulme, began volunteering on the Saturday tea team in 2002.
“I had a look around and thought what a fantastic cause. I felt inspired by what was going on here and wanted to contribute towards it. I’ve really enjoyed it and the care team have been great, it is a really happy place to work,” said Sue.
Ron and Krystyna Gratton from Didsbury, came as a ‘double-act’ and spent nineteen years volunteering at Francis House. The couple were in the crowds when the late Princess Diana opened the hospice in 1991.
Krystyna a retired optometrist said: “It’s been a pleasure to come every week and although you don’t work directly with the children - there is a fantastic care team for that, I’ve been able to talk to the families that come here, it’s their holiday, a real break.”
Volunteers are essential to the smooth running the hospice and the charity shop. The children's charity thanks each and every one of them for their help and support.
Francis House is looking for people to join, or start, a local fundraising group. Anyone with time to spare and would like to find out more can contact Ellie Bridges in the fundraising office on 0161 443 2200.