“Volunteering has become a part of our lives. It’s our way of giving something back to society.”

Married couple Dave and June Tattersall have been volunteering between them for almost 10 years. The pair help to fundraise for ELHT&Me, the official charity for East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust, and Dave is a familiar face in the shop based at Blackburn Royal Teaching Hospital.  

Dave said:

"June has always been the sociable one out of the two of us so for me, volunteering has really brought me out of my shell. It’s a great way to meet new and interesting people, and something I’ll always be grateful for.

Dave and JuneWhen needed, weekends and evenings are spent at local fairs, events and shows shaking collection buckets, drumming up prizes for the tombola or basically doing anything that’s needed to raise awareness – and cash – for the charity.

I drop and collect money tins for local businesses in Oswaldtwistle and since I retired from engineering, I’ve worked every Thursday in the charity shop. My role is to sell products to raise money for the charity, but I also spend a lot of my day chatting to visitors and patients; something which I believe is equally as important.

People appreciate having someone to chat too – especially in a hospital environment where you don’t know what that person is going through.

Spending five minutes chatting to a little old lady who’s visiting her poorly husband may just be the only other conversation she has that day or helping a visitor choose an appropriate gift for the patient they are here to see is part and parcel of the job, and I love it.

It’s heart-warming too when regular visitors and patients pop in to say hello or wave as they walk past.

We also attend fun events such as The Big NHS Tee-Off in August and in March June had the pleasure of going along to the Ribble Valley Business Awards where ELHT&Me scooped the win for not for profit. She had a wonderful night and met some lovely people.

Being a volunteer is great. It’s a lovely thing to do together as a couple and now June has completed all the necessary volunteering training she too, once retired, will be a familiar face in the shop!

Volunteering helps us give something back to society. We don’t give it a second thought anymore. It’s just something we do and will continue to do for as long as we can." 

If you’ve been inspired to join our team of volunteers, visit www.elht.nhs.uk