John and Lesley are two volunteers at our Surbiton Home. They have been volunteering for The Royal Star & Garter Homes for more than twenty years and started soon after Lesley’s father was admitted to the Richmond Home. After volunteering for many years at Richmond, they recently moved over to our Surbiton Home, to continue supporting our residents.
Lesley’s father was admitted to the Richmond Home in 1993 and on arrival we were struck by the caring nature of the staff that we observed. With this in mind, we decided to volunteer for the Charity and one of the first activities we were involved in was Wheelchair Dancing. We’d never volunteered for a charitable organisation before and as a result it was a new challenge and learning experience for us.
Over the years we’ve been involved in a number of activities from boat trips to football matches. It’s been challenging but also incredibly rewarding and we wouldn’t change our time here for anything. To see the good care that is provided to each resident is amazing and being a part of that is an honour. There have been so many wonderful moments over the years and to pick out one above the rest is impossible. Moments when we’ve witnessed good care or had a laugh with a resident form the greatest memories and thankfully there have been so many.
We moved over last year to continue volunteering for the Charity at the new Surbiton Home and continue to volunteer every Tuesday. We get involved in as many activities as possible and help out during outings. Everybody’s really friendly and approachable, which reflects the spirit of the Charity. Regardless of the building, the spirit of the Charity is the same, providing great care for the residents and it’s great to be a part of this. The Home is vastly different to the Richmond building, it feels a lot more homely as everyone lives closer together now. We feel like we’re popping over to visit our extended family when we arrive each week.
In terms of describing The Royal Star & Garter Homes in one sentence, we would say, “It’s a friendly, homely Charity that promotes great care and respect for its residents. It’s like a home from home”.
John and Lesley also help to run the NAAFI Wagon, which makes its rounds to our residents each week. To read more about the Wagon please click here.