Sam’s granddad Bill was one of a kind. When he died in 2013, she wanted to find a way to celebrate a unique character – and to say thank you to the volunteers who went out of their way to brighten up his days. So Sam put her best foot forward and completed the Thames Path Challenge, raising over £400 for Royal Voluntary Service.
Sam’s story shows how simple and satisfying it can be to remember someone special and – make a lasting impact – in your own unique way.
Sam and her granddad lived in the same village and had a close bond. In particular, she cherishes a very special time in their relationship – when she was working at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, where her granddad would attend medical appointments.
"Whenever my granddad came in for an appointment, a volunteer from the Royal Voluntary Service café would call me asking me to join him for a hot chocolate and a sausage roll. I still have fond memories of meeting him at the café and the lovely ladies that looked after him while he was there.
"He was always very pleased to see me and have a catch up."
Both Sam and her granddad valued the way the café volunteers went out of their way to make patients like Bill feel comfortable.
"He would always chat to them – a lot were a similar age to him. I know he appreciated the time they gave him."
Up and down the country, Royal Voluntary Service volunteers are making a difference in our Hospital Shops and Cafés
. Whether they’re stopping for a chat as they serve a cup of tea, or sharing a smile and some friendly words while they do a ward trolley service, they go the extra mile and make a positive impact on the lives of older people. Knowing that people like the café volunteers were looking after her grandfather comforted and inspired Sam.
By deciding to fundraise for Royal Voluntary Service
in memory of her grandfather, Sam could say thank you for all he’d done for her – as well as showing her appreciation for the volunteers who helped him.
Sam signed up for the Thames Path Challenge – a 100k walk along the Thames from Putney Bridge in London to Henley-on-Thames in Berkshire.
"I signed up as my Mum and two of her friends are taking part and it looked fun. I have run half marathons and marathons, so this looked like a good challenge to take on next."
Sam successfully completed the walk and raised an impressive £413. What’s more, she had the satisfaction of knowing her granddad would have been really proud of the contribution Sam made to a charity he admired – and she’s thrilled at what she achieved too.
"I completed the 100k charity walk in 251/2 hours! It was such hard work, but somehow I made it across the finish line. So happy to raise money for Royal Voluntary Service."
Fundraising your way
If you’re inspired by Sam’s story, why not fundraise for Royal Voluntary Service too? It’s a wonderful way to honour the memory of someone or perhaps you’d simply like to find fun and fulfilment while you support people in the community.
It’s easy and fun to get involved and there are so many ways you can help – whatever your skills and interests.
Fundraise in memory for Royal Voluntary Service
If you’d like more inspiration, our friendly fundraising team is here to help. Simply call 0800 731 9197, email firstname.lastname@example.org or click the button below to find more ways you could fundraise for Royal Voluntary Service.
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