Post | January 2024 | Volunteer Stories | 2 min read

I am passionate about sustainability and I have loved being a small part of supporting local efforts

Written by GoVol Herts
2 photos, left image shows a well stocked charity shop and the right image shows Sara-Jane wearing a cap, glasses and blue top. She is on a boat, and is smiling.

Sara-Jane sent us her story about her experiences volunteering with Garden House Hospice:

I knew about Garden House Hospice in Letchworth, which covers North Herts, but hadn't been any more involved other than donating clothes and household items since moving to Hitchin in 2019. Having had first hand experience of hospice care in my local area when I was in my 20's, it's very much a cause close to my heart and I know how hard hospices have to work to raise vital funds for people with life limiting illnesses.

I was out of work last year and so got in touch with the hospice to see if I could lend a hand. I contacted them via GoVol Herts and applied for the role of volunteer for collections at the Farmers on Christmas Lights Tour. I also mentioned that I was currently unemployed and happy to help with any other initiatives local to me.

The team got in touch to say that in the lead up to Christmas the shops were in need of some extra help and that there were two shops in Hitchin in the arcade at Churchgate - Threads (a preloved fashion boutique) and Vintage House (stocking antiques, vintage items and preowned bridal gowns under one roof). I went down for a show around at the end of November and immediately knew this would be a great opportunity for me. I volunteered throughout the month of December, mainly at Threads, and am still volunteering until I start a new full time job at the end of the month.

I love working at Threads and meeting all the people who come in and also the gorgeous dogs (the shop is dog friendly!) The public donate directly to the shops and bring interesting books, vintage clothes, and gorgeous pieces like silverware or clocks and the stock in both shops is constantly changing. There are 'regulars' (some of whom I have started to get to know!) who come in to check out the latest offerings from time to time. If you haven't already been to take a look, I would certainly recommend a visit!

I have thoroughly enjoyed my time volunteering and am glad that I decided to reach out. If you are thinking about volunteering, then give it a go, as you will find nothing but kindness, support and a good giggle here! Whether you want retail experience, you'd like a reason to get out of the house, or you need to build up some confidence, I have no doubt Nicola and Peter will make you feel welcome and part of the team right from the start.

I am passionate about sustainability and I have loved being a small part of supporting local efforts to change the way we shop and reduce our impact on the planet.

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