This is Mike, one of our valued hospice volunteers.
Mike became a volunteer in the mid to late 90s, while he was a serving member of Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service. He first heard about Claire House after a spokesperson for the charity visited his workplace to talk about different fundraising events. As a result, Mike and his colleagues began donating money to Claire House, and also participated in “4 charity car washes a year” that raised money for various causes.
After he retired, Mike began devoting more of his time to volunteering. He started out by collecting items for Claire House’s retail stores. Since then, Mike has been a huge help to the hospice by driving, donating, painting and being an all-round handyman. In fact, one of his favourite things about being a volunteer at Claire House is the vast amount of “different options of volunteering available”. Mike loves that he can do so many various things to help the charity, while making a huge difference to countless lives.
Mike offered some words of encouragement for people considering volunteering. He advises them “to try everything, & pick something that is close to your heart or means something.”
One of Mike’s main responsibilities at Claire House is driving families to and from the hospice and Alder Hey children’s hospital. He has also participated in many fundraisers, and spoken to groups and at events to help raise awareness of the charity. In doing so, he has met and inspired many families and volunteers. This is such important and beneficial work, as the more people learn about Claire House, the more we can do to help. The bigger the charity grows, the more children and families can be reached.
Mike’s wife, Debbie, also volunteers for Claire House as a receptionist and has partook in various fundraisers and events. In 2020, Mike and Debbie welcomed a new grandchild and have found balancing volunteering alongside childcare duties to be a difficult task, especially during a pandemic. However, Mike recently had the opportunity to be Santa at the 2021 Claire House Christmas Party at Caxton Wood. He described the experience as his “most memorable moment in volunteering”.
Mike and Debbie are hoping that when their 2 eldest grandchildren start school in September, they will have more time for charitable contributions.
Nonetheless, if you are spending 2 days a week volunteering or a few hours a month, it is always appreciated at Claire House.
If you are interested in donating some of your time to Claire House, sign up here.