City Hospice, Cardiff’s local hospice, showcased the vital work of its volunteers at a special event, supported by Jenny Rathbone MS, at the Senedd on 5 October.
City Hospice is the only provider of home-based specialist palliative care in the capital and provides care to patients with terminal or life limiting illnesses, as well as counselling and support services for their patient’s families.
The charity’s work is supported by over 250 volunteers who help with a range of roles at the hospice itself in Whitchurch and in the community, including gardening, transport for patients, event support and retail.
Hosted by ambassador Sian Lloyd, the event showcased the contributions of the charity’s volunteers and featured speeches from the charity’s counselling service manager Karen Fenna and consultant Dr James Davies, as well as volunteers themselves.
Natalie Bruno, whose dad was cared for by City Hospice following a terminal cancer diagnosis, shared how volunteering has changed her and her daughter Lyra’s lives.
Natalie said: “My dad was a strong believer of giving back, which inspired Lyra and I to begin our fundraising journey for City Hospice. From 100k challenges to the Sparkle Walk, Forever Flowers to Wag this Way, we have met some amazing people and made lifelong friends while giving something back to support a charity that helps families like ours.
“Volunteering and fundraising have given Lyra the opportunity to speak about her bamp, the hospice and the fantastic work they do. Hospice isn’t a scary word to Lyra; she always smiles when she talks about her volunteering and fundraising activities.”
Trustee Maurice Prendergast has volunteered throughout his life. He began volunteering for City Hospice following his son-in-law’s death and became even more involved after the charity also cared for his wife Irene.
Maurice said: “City Hospice threw their comfort blanket around our family during the dark periods of our life. Everyone deserves the end of life care James and Irene experienced from City Hospice and this inspired me to want to help the charity further.
“Volunteering is twice blessed; it benefits those who give and those who receive. The City Hospice volunteers have a wonderful diversity of skills and experience that benefit patients, their families and fellow volunteers. We can all make a difference and help each other and ourselves by recognising and building on these skills.”
Samantha Curtis, Volunteer Development Manager at City Hospice, said: “It was an honour to be able to showcase and appreciate the tremendous efforts of all of our volunteers on such a high-scale platform at the Senedd. At City Hospice, we couldn’t do what we do without our incredible team of volunteers supporting us.
“We really appreciate the dedication of our volunteers who choose to donate the most precious thing of all: their time. Each volunteer brings a unique and valued contribution to the City Hospice team and our community in Cardiff benefits greatly from their efforts, especially in times of grief and uncertainty.”
Jenny Rathbone MS said: “City Hospice provides vital support to families across Cardiff, with understanding and a wonderful range of care and support offered. Most volunteers have lived experience of a life limiting or terminal illness through their loved ones; they provide invaluable support to families during a difficult time in their lives.”
Following the conclusion of the event, attendees enjoyed a buffet which was kindly sponsored by Creative Risk Solutions.