The lead up to Christmas is a busy time at the Hospice. We’re organising our popular Santa Fun Runs, running our annual Light Up A Life appeal, arranging a host of festive activities, and distributing thousands of Christmas Cards to our shops and beyond.

Retail volunteer, Leo is our volunteer buyer who sources items for the Hospice shops that we might not receive as donations. These have included items such as telescopic umbrellas, jewellery, scarves, woolly hats & gloves, cushions and rugs.

Leo is the driving force behind the beautiful range of Hospice Christmas cards we sell. She selects suppliers, chooses designs and ensures the chosen supplier meets our own brand requirements for responsible sourcing; prior to receiving the cards, Leo also visits the factory to check on production.

All the cards and envelopes are entirely recyclable and feature no plastic or glitter. Leo has raised our green credentials without raising prices to our customers, so they’re a great deal for our supporters as well as the environment.  The annual process starts in November of the previous year, so this autumn sees Leo gearing up for Christmas next year.Wooden Christmas decorations on a tree

Leo has also worked closely with the Man Shed team for several years to create our own exclusive Christmas tree decorations. She had a team of volunteers to cord up the decorations with our distinctive red & white cords.Ladies cording decorations around a table

Leo reports that sales are buoyant, underlined by the fact that the Hospice shops sell thousands of packs of Christmas cards across our care area.

“The theme of peace and joy is eternally popular,” she says, ‘and we always have cards to appeal to all denominations. The job is very rewarding, and I am part of a fabulous team,” says Leo, who spends her time between the Hospice in Esher and the Retail Hub in Hersham.