Willow Wood Hospice wouldn’t be able to care for the communities of Tameside and Glossop without the support and dedication of its team of over 500 volunteers, and recently treated more than 300 of these to a slap up afternoon tea, entertainment, dancing and a fantastic party held in the sports hall at West Hill School.

Thanks were given and toasts raised (courtesy of Morrisons Dukinfield who donated a large quantity of both soft and alcoholic drinks) and a good time was had by all. Lisa Pye, volunteer services manager explains, “Our volunteers support us in all areas of the Hospice, our gardens, our offices, our retail and distribution sector, our Day Services and Inpatient Unit, our kitchens and our laundry. We really couldn’t do it without them, and treating them to a wonderful afternoon is really the least we can do to thank them.

“We also recognised the length of service of our volunteers, with members of our Board of Trustees handing out badges to commemorate five, ten, fifteen and twenty years of volunteering. Their skills and support are invaluable to us and we’ve worked out that, by calculating their hours at minimum wage, they save us £1,000,000 annually – so we can truly say thanks a million!”

All those present, who ranged in age from 13 year olds volunteering as part of the Duke of Edinburgh Scheme to those of a more mature vintage, enjoyed the afternoon immensely. Games including heads & tails and stand up bingo went down a treat, and singer Simon Garcia was a huge hit with his wide repertoire of classic songs, which had everyone joining in and dancing to the hits.

“We have had some fantastic support from our community which has helped make this party such a success.” said Lisa. “Huge thanks to Action Together who gave us a grant for £500 towards the costs. Many local businesses gave us discounts, donations and gifts and special thanks to Booth on the Move, Events by Shantel and Sweetest Feeling who donated their products and services free-of-charge.”

If you would like to find out more about volunteering at Willow Wood, please click here for information and to apply online.

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