Volunteers are the heart of Good Shepherd and play a huge role in helping us deliver our services. In our new series we will be talking to our volunteers about what makes their work here at the Good Shepherd so special. Next up is Kath:
What do you do at the Good Shepherd?
It’s usually packing and putting the food ready for when the families visit the Food Pantry. I come in on a Friday to help prepare for the following week.
Why did you decide to volunteer and how long have you been volunteering?
I have been volunteering here for quite a few years but I did have to stop during the pandemic. I really missed not being able to come in and have been back in for a year or so now. I enjoy just keeping myself to myself and working really hard when I am here. I first started volunteering because I wanted to fill my time and the Good Shepherd is such a good cause.
What do you find the most fulfilling about volunteering here?
I just think it’s really important to give your time to the benefit of others. I worked as a Children’s Nurse in the Dudley area until I was 70 – so for 50 years in total – and then carried on volunteering for one evening a week for another eight years after that. It was such a lovely job. But I can’t go back now because after Covid the rules have changed, and I’m getting older! I couldn’t do the work I did three years ago now. I suppose there is a thread of wanting to help people both in my work and volunteering. I also help with a foodbank at Upper Gornal Methodist Church on a Monday.
Why do you feel the work of the Good Shepherd is important in Wolverhampton?
Because people need the support. We see how many families are coming in and so it is important that the Good Shepherd is able to help provide them with food.
What is the most special memory you have experienced whilst being a volunteer here?
I wouldn’t say one particular memory or moment but what always springs to mind for me when I come to the Good Shepherd is how hard the staff work. I work in Lisa’s area and while she appears to be tough, the compassion that oozes out of her when she is talking to the service users and trying to help them is lovely to see.
Describe the Good Shepherd in three words?
Amazing, compassionate and humble. When I say humble it is about the service users who come to the Good Shepherd. They are so grateful for the support and always say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ and that makes me feel humble as well.