Marvellous mannequins and dogs in bow ties

Marvellous mannequins and dogs in bow ties! The joy of volunteering

Beverley volunteers in our Woodingdean shop and particularly enjoys dressing the mannequins! She tells us why she loves volunteering and would suggest giving it a go.

“I knew about Martlets because my husband had motor neurone disease and died on the inpatient unit in 2002. The care he and my family received was wonderful and after he died they provided bereavement counselling for my young daughter. The counsellor was absolutely brilliant and made such a difference.

Later, we did some fundraising for Martlets and I started to think I’d like to offer my services as a volunteer once the girls were older and I had more time. I popped into my local Martlets shop in Woodingdean and asked if they had any volunteering opportunities. It was so easy; I just filled in a form and the following week I did an hour’s training in the shop. I had never worked in a shop before but got the hang of it straight away. I loved the variety of jobs from being on the till to sorting donations, pricing, and putting them out in the shop. It’s exciting when something unusual comes in, or vintage clothing, which we send to our vintage shop on Church Street.

Beverly volunteer with the dog in our Woodingdean shop

One of my favourite things is dressing the mannequins in the shop window. It’s fun putting a look together from the different clothing that comes in and grabbing the attention of passers by.

I’ve made some new friends and we’re all different ages which is nice. Our volunteers range from 18 to around 80 years old, so there’s quite a variety. We’ve all got different things to tell each other and of course it’s always interesting talking to the customers. We get some lovely regulars coming in who enjoy a chat and we get to know their interests.

Jack russell dog in a bow tie

We allow well-behaved dogs to come into the shop and we’ve got dog treats under the till for them. My favourite is Jake the Jack Russell who always wears a bow tie. He comes in with his owner and it’s great to see them.

I would recommend volunteering to anybody. It’s good fun; there’s always interesting donations to sort through and the people are great.”

Could you volunteer for us at Martlets?

Your time is priceless. As part of #TeamMartlets, you’ll play a crucial part in keeping your local hospice caring. If you’d like to feel like Beverley and connect with your community, why not try a trial shift at your local Martlets shop? Whatever your experience and skills, we’ll help you find a Martlets volunteer role that suits you. For more information, contact our volunteering services team on 01273 021549 or