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Get behind the wheel for charity

Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin volunteers Barry, Anthony and Dan

Published on 16 January 2020 12:03 PM

Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin offers a free furniture collection service in Oswestry and Wellington but there aren’t enough volunteer drivers to go round.

Volunteering for Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin is rewarding and fun as Barry Church, 68, can confirm. He worked as a shift foreman for GKN Sankey and other local firms before retiring three years ago.

‘My retirement plan is to keep active and as a driver or a porter you are kept very busy. The work is varied and it’s not just about delivering and collecting furniture. For some of the older people we visit, we are the only people they’ll see all week, so we try to make time for a chat.’

People think moving furniture is all about physical strength, but Barry says there’s a bit more to it than that. ‘You need to be calm, level-headed and patient too, as people can sometimes get a bit stressed when furniture is being moved.’

Our two furniture charity shops raise vital funds for information and advice services for older people, unlocking millions in benefits every year and making sure vulnerable people receive the right advice.

Shop manager Paula Hinks says: ‘We are looking for people who are local to Oswestry and Wellington and can make a commitment to volunteering some time each week.’

Barry adds: ‘There’s a lot of problem solving involved. We recently got a chest of drawers up a spiral staircase. Most of all, it’s great to have a laugh and a joke with other volunteers. I get the fellowship I was losing out on after retiring and the work keeps me active.’

If you want to find out more about volunteering with Age UK Shropshire Telford & Wrekin call our volunteer recruitment team on 01743 588 570 or email volunteering@ageukstw.org.uk

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