Shropshire Star

Hope House recognises dedication of its long-serving volunteers

Hope House Children’s Hospices have celebrated the support and efforts of more than 80 of its long-serving volunteers.

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Hope House volunteers recognised at the charity's annual ceremony.

The annual volunteer awards ceremonies returned to the Hope House and Tŷ Gobaith hospices in person this year, after three years of online events due to the pandemic.

In total 84 awards were presented commemorating dedication ranging from three to 30 years of service.

They covered every area of the charity’s work from fundraising to gardening, and from trustees to charity shop teams.

The 30-year award went to Daphne Mathias who helped to found the charity’s Llanfyllin Friends fundraising group.

Six 25-year awards were presented to fundraisers Ken Arch MBE from Bridgnorth, and Kicki Rouse from Wem, as well as Enid Toft, Sioned Edwards, Carys Williams and Liz Williams from the Ruthin Friends Group.

The ceremonies at both hospices began with moving talks from mothers Susie Seymour and Nerys Davies about the impact receiving respite care for their young sons William and Bedwyr has had on their families.

After being presented with their certificates by vice chair of trustees Barbara Evans, herself a volunteer for 33 years and one of the charity’s founders, the volunteers enjoyed an afternoon tea and a tour of the hospices to see more of what their selfless efforts make possible.

Chief Executive Andy Goldsmith paid tribute to their talent and generosity, and thanked them for their gift of time to the children and families.

“We have almost 500 active volunteers and if you add up all the hours that you donate to Hope House and Tŷ Gobaith every year that equates to around £725,000 worth of time,” he said.

"Everything that you do, whether that is sorting and selling donations of our stock in our shops, or helping at events, or tending the gardens at the hospices, directly translates into providing more care for more children and families.

"Without all of you we would not have Hope House and Tŷ Gobaith. We need you so that the vital care can be here for every child and family who needs us now and in the future. Thank you for making everything possible.”

This year’s full list of recipients

* Bangor Shop: Silvia Podolini – five years.

* Bridgnorth Shop: Heather Barr – five years.

* Chester Shop: Pauline Williams – three years, and Sandra Allman – 10 years.

* Christleton Friends Group: Celia Evans – 15 years, and Kerry Christmas – 15 years.

* Church Stretton Friends Group: Marilyn Evans – 20 years.

* Church Stretton Shop: Jo Bate – three years, Ruth Trow – five years, Ruth Jenkins, John Nelson and Shelly Jones – 10 years.

* Crewe Friends Group: Debbie Bilotta – 10 years.

* Denbigh Shop: Chris Johnson and James Morgan – three years, and Alison Bromley – five years.

* Flint Shop: Helen Moulton, Jean Warne, Valerie Shaw, Jane Blackwell and Debbie Newbegin – three years.

* Fundraising Administration: Sarah Quick – five years.

* Fundraising: Anne Ashton – three years, Karen Penney and Helen George – 10 years, and Kicki Rouse and Ken Arch MBE – 25 years.

* Hope House Gardener: Linda Evans – five years.

* Llandudno Shop: Sarah Edward – three years, Penny Rogers, Kathleen Hammond, Ann Lancaster, Dilys Jones, Margaret Jones, Susan Bell and Earl Starkie – five years.

* Llanfyllin Friends Group: Daphne Mathias – 30 years.

* Llyn Peninsula Friends Group: Hywel Jones and Jennifer Jones – five years, and Julia Griffiths – 15 years.

* Ludlow Shop: Jenny Vaughan – 10 years, and Pat Hansen and Judith Mulliner – 20 years.

* Mold and Buckley Friends Group: Meryl Hayes – 20 years.

* Nantwich Shop: Andrew Ward and Jennifer Bourne – five years, Elizabeth Pass, Irene Williamson and Allison Evemy – 10 years, Joy Marriott – 20 years.

* Oswestry Shop: Mary Trow, Gill Hill and Cameron Paull – three years, Alwena Evans, Irene Edwards, Margaret Morris, Mary Owens and Diana Barnes – 10 years, Diane Seager – 20 years.

* Ruthin Friends Group: Anwen Jones – 15 years, Enid Toft, Sioned Edwards, Carys Williams and Liz Williams – 25 years.

* Shrewsbury Harlescott Shop: Sonia Clayton and Julie Jones – three years.

* Shrewsbury Oteley Road Shop: Roger Pittaway, Sue Hill and Valerie Taylor – three years, and Keith Roberts – five years.

* Retail Stock Collector: Bryan Davis – five years.

* Telford Events Group: Clare Pitchford, Lesley Herrington, Charlotte Barker and Sarah Dickson – 10 years.

* Tŷ Gobaith Gardener: Elwyn Roberts – 15 years.

* Trustees: Graeme Harkness, Andrew Morris, Gary Morton and Kelly Stant – three years.

* Tywyn Friends Group: Trina Hawkes and Anita Inman – three years, Gladys Jones and Dennis Jones – 15 years.

* Welshpool Shop: Tasmin Morris and Carol Lloyd – three years, and Janet Richards – 15 years.

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