"I am now living a life rather than just an existence. That’s why I decided to volunteer: I wanted to give something back"

These are the powerful words of ex-Cuerden Hall-service user-turned-volunteer Beverley Sharrock. Here, Bev tells her story in her own words.

Bev Sharrock on stage at Sue Ryder's Incredible Colleagues Awards 2018
Bev Sharrock on stage at Sue Ryder's Incredible Colleagues Awards 2018.

I began attending day services at Sue Ryder Cuerden Hall neurological care centre about 13 years ago. The difference that this had made to my life is unbelievable.

The love, care, help and support that I and my family have received has been life changing; I’m now living a life rather than an existence.

Why I volunteer: to give neurological residents a voice

I decided to become a volunteer as I wanted to give something back, and because I’m passionate about helping residents with complex neurological needs to feel more empowered.

I love to be a listening ear for residents, family staff and volunteers – so much so that I’ve started up a discussion group with the residents to get residents talking, help them to open up, reminisce and think independently, and I also do one-to-one work with residents.

I also try to be an ambassador for the organisation and spread the Sue Ryder message to the local community and beyond. I enjoy coming up with ideas for fundraising too – the wackier the better!

What volunteering has taught me

You will get far more out of volunteering than you put in. It has been the best therapy for me because it has given me a whole new purpose in life and taught me to see beyond people’s disabilities.

There’s a lot more to our residents than their disabilities, and this is another message that I’m keen to promote in the work I do as a volunteer.

As a Sue Ryder volunteer, you become part of a very special family and you are there to support one other. Whatever talents you have, the organisation can use you.

Give it a go and you’ll see just how big a difference your contribution will make to the lives of others, and your own!

Are you feeling inspired by Bev's story?

Author

Bev Sharrock

Neurological service user turned volunteer

Bev Sharrock

Bev attended day services at our Cuerden Hall neurological care centre for 13 years. For the past year, she has been volunteering for Sue Ryder.