Shop Volunteer Joan Read's Story

Joan Read has been volunteering in our Felixstowe shop since it opened in 2000 and is looking forward to receiving her award for 15 years’ service this summer at the Celebration Event.

She now helps for one day each week and is on call for cover when needed. Joan has seen six or seven different managers and remembers the shop when it first opened seeing it change from housing a “long, jumble-sale- type table, laden with clothes” through two refurbishments, to how it looks today after its most recent re-fit.

Joan began volunteering in the shop with her husband Ray, whom she has been married to for over 60 years.

Joan started volunteering as a way of giving back to her local community, which she loves, but when Ray, who is now cared for in a Home, became ill with Dementia it was often also ‘respite’ for her in the early stages of his illness.

Joan said: “Volunteering at the Hospice shop is what saves me from being alone.

“My regular work in the shop is a life saver and my shifts give me the independence and confidence I need.

“It has been, and remains, a pleasure to work here.”

If you’re interested in volunteering in your local St Elizabeth Hospice shop and want to find out more, take a look at our volunteer vacancies.

Sign up to receive monthly updates

Share your story