Sally, Alana House volunteer

Sally has been volunteering at Alana House for three years. She came across the opportunity on the Reading Voluntary Action website and after speaking with PACT’s HR Manager, it was suggested that her experience in the NHS and the education sector would be a good fit for the work of Alana House.

Sally spends most of her volunteering time supporting the Alana House team with all sorts of behind-the-scenes tasks, helping the many groups and activities run smoothly for the women. Sally has also been involved in several major Alana House events. Last summer, she was involved in the Open Garden fundraiser where over 100 guests came together to celebrate and support Alana House in the beautiful gardens of Haines Hill, Twyford.

She said about the event: “The day was just brilliant, not just with sunshine, but in so many ways – the generously gifted opportunity to use the gardens and grounds was a real validation of the abilities of the service users at Alana House, and for many people, including our guests, it was their first opportunity to meet friends again for many months. It was just one of those days that was as much about raising people up as it was about raising money!”

Another highlight from last year was the opportunity Sally had to attend a thank you event for charity volunteers at Ascot Racecourse, organised by Berkshire Community Foundation. She attended the event with PACT CEO Natausha van Vliet and enjoyed a day of sunshine, cakes and even a chance to meet Prince Edward! (Sally and Natausha are pictured above overlooking the racecourse.) You can read about her day at the races here.

Sally is currently helping Alana House to organise their next event, a service at Reading Minster to celebrate International Women’s Day. The event promises to be a fantastic celebration of the strength of women together, with readings, performances and reflections from service users, local groups and individuals such as the Mayor of Reading and Reading Rock Choir. You can find out more and book tickets here.

Sally said about her experience of volunteering with PACT: “One of the strengths of PACT that always comes to mind when people ask me about the organisation is that they really understand the volunteering role, and how to make the most of the opportunity for both volunteers and staff. I think the fact that there are many volunteers here, and many who have been here a long time, speaks volumes about how embedded we feel in our different roles and how much we feel part of the organisation. Something I always feel in and around our workplace is a real generosity of spirit – no-one is an outsider – and I think our service users must feel that too.”

Sally’s help has been invaluable over the last few years, both to the team and the women Alana House supports.

Thank you Sally for all you do to support Alana House: you are a PACT superstar!

If you were inspired by Sally’s story you can make a donation to Alana House here or find out more about Alana House’s work here.