Sheila, who is retired, has been a volunteer for the Community and Events Group since 2008.

About 10 years ago I was looking for a volunteering role and approached Brunswick. As work commitments limited my input to a half day, it was suggested that I work in the office at Priory Street. I have continued to work there ever since. I am now mainly involved in helping individual workers develop literacy skills – but I also do some fundraising for the Community and Events group, bake for the café, keep in touch with one retired worker and occasionally accompany workers on outings.

It has been most satisfying to see how all workers involved in office work at Priory Street have shown significant improvements in their literacy and numeracy skills and the sense of satisfaction and achievement they have gained.

For me volunteering at Brunswick has been an opportunity to continue to use a range of personal skills, develop new interests and friendships and helping to make a positive difference to the lives of others.

My favourite Brunswick story is of the day some years ago when I went to a football match at Arsenal with one of the workers. The start time was changed so we had several hours to fill before kickoff. We found ourselves in the middle of London on a day when every organisation seemed to be protesting about something or celebrating their existence. We took refuge in St. Martin’s in the field. We ended up travelling home first class.

As a volunteer I feel valued because staff readily say thank you and show their appreciation of my contribution.