Why I Volunteer – Volunteers Week 2018
Volunteers Week 2018
From 1st-7th June, it’s Volunteers’ Week across the UK. At Cancer Fund for Children, this gives us an amazing excuse to celebrate and acknowledge the contribution our dedicated team of volunteers make.
One such volunteer is Lily Devlin. We recently caught up with Lily to find out more about why she volunteers.
1. Can you tell me about your volunteer role with Cancer Fund for Children? What do you do?
I volunteer at Cancer Fund for Children’s therapeutic short break centre, Daisy Lodge around two days a month. I support the complementary therapy team, providing treatments such as aromatherapy, reflexology and massages to families affected by cancer.
2. How did you find out about this volunteering opportunity?
I met Patsy, who works as a Complementary Therapist at Daisy Lodge, a few years ago, before she worked for Cancer Fund for Children. I received a treatment from her and it was just amazing, so much so it inspired me to go to college and train in complementary therapy techniques. I had recently retired as a librarian, and thought this would be a great way to do something that I enjoyed with my time. When Patsy started working at Daisy Lodge, and I completed my training, I was able to start volunteering as part of her complementary team.
3. What made you want to volunteer?
I always felt when I retired I wanted to do something with my time, to give something back. Unfortunately I had lost a couple of my friends quite young, in their 40s or 50s, and I felt lucky that I had reached retirement age and was in a position to be able to do something like volunteering.
4. What is the most rewarding aspect of your volunteering role at Cancer Fund for Children?
I think working at Daisy Lodge, in such a beautiful setting with so many wonderful people is one of the most rewarding aspects of volunteering. There’s an excellent team of volunteers at Daisy Lodge, and I’ve made so many new friends – we’re a close bunch and always help each other out. Also, definitely some of the families we provide treatments for, and seeing the impact it has on them and how relaxed they become is amazing.
5. What is your most memorable volunteer moment?
I have many but one sticks out for sure. I remember one time doing complementary therapy with a mum at Daisy Lodge. As part of the treatment, I had placed my hands on either side of her face, letting her smell and breathe in the aroma of the oils I was using. She just burst in to tears because she said she did something similar with her wee boy, who was in cancer treatment at the time, and he loved it so much. She said she was so glad she could see how he felt when she was doing that with him. It was so lovely to see the impact such a simple caring touch could have on a family going through a difficult time.
6. What would you say to someone to encourage them to volunteer for Cancer Fund for Children?
Definitely do it! It’s an amazing feeling when you come home at the end of your volunteering, knowing you have made a difference, and done something worthwhile. When I come home from Daisy Lodge, I just feel more relaxed and positive. I would encourage anyone who has the time to consider volunteering.
You Can Make A Difference
Inspired by Lily’s story and interested in giving up some of your time to help make a difference to local children with cancer, and their families?
Check out our current volunteering opportunities here.