The theme of this year’s Volunteers’ Week is A Time To Say Thanks and here at Princess Alice Hospice we have taken the opportunity this week, and for the whole month to say thank you to our volunteers.

Smiling volunteer receptionist behind a screen at the reception deskPrincess Alice Hospice has a great history of volunteering and, we are proud to say that we still have a few volunteers who supported us before the Hospice even opened still volunteering with us today!  You can find volunteers in every part of the organisation; guiding our strategy as trustees and committee members, supporting customers and raising funds in all of our 45 shops, welcoming staff and visitors at reception, keeping our grounds looking amazing, supporting people with bereavement, grief and loss in a number of different settings, assisting with administration in our offices, raising funds, and supporting people in the community.  It is amazing that so many of our volunteers have been able to adapt their roles over the pandemic – including new roles being established – for example volunteers who transport COVID tests at the weekend.  We are so pleased that they have been able to volunteer over Zoom and the telephone, adapt their roles to incorporate social distancing, and have shown such flexibility and understanding in a difficult year.

I want to say a big thank you too, to our much valued, and missed, volunteers who have had to put their volunteering on hold over the last year – either because we are not able to support the role due to restrictions or because personal circumstances have prevented people from volunteering.  We know how much volunteering means to our volunteers and also the impact of not being able to volunteer.  We really appreciate their patience as lockdown has increased from an anticipated few months to well over a year.

A retail volunteer in a Princess Alice Hospice shop

I was lucky to be able to say thank you to some of our volunteers this last week by catching up with our gardeners, reception volunteers and visiting two of our shops.  Senior staff members have been visiting the shops this week and throughout June and it has been lovely to hear the positive feedback about how much people enjoy and get out of volunteering.

Our CEO Nicki recorded a video message, and we also set up a digital thank you board that we were able to share with all our staff and volunteers when we launched our Hospice Hub intranet this week.

As we continue to reopen volunteering I am looking forward to seeing more of our PAH volunteers and being able to say thank you in person for their hard work, commitment and support.


Graphic which says 'A Time to say thanks, find out more, Volunteers' week, 1-7 June'