IT was seeing for himself the standard of care the St Luke’s team offered when his wife Lynne was in the final stages of her fight again cancer that prompted Peter Bower to become one of our volunteers.
Peter can be found every Thursday morning at our Donation Centre, where he is part of the our retail section eBay team, sorting and categorising items that are likely to achieve a higher price online than they might in our shops.
“The role is very interesting especially the variation in items that are actually donated and there is a great mixture of skills and experience amongst all the volunteers,” says 72-year-old Peter, who lives in Oughtibridge and has now been volunteering for four years.
“The reason I do this is because of the wonderful care and support offered by such a fabulous organisation.”
It was after Lynne was diagnosed with terminal metastatic lung cancer that she was referred to our Community Team.
“We found their approach and care to be wonderful and as well as listening, understanding and attempting to offer best possible solutions for pain relief, they developed a fabulous rapport with Lynne which quickly became a friendship and in a time of pain and isolation she looked forward to the St Luke’s visits,” Peter explains.
“One huge opportunity was the chance to go to St Luke’s to have a proper bath, something that was impossible at home.
“I was able to take Lynne to the hospice and she was looked after by two wonderful ladies who helped her bath and made her more comfortable than she had been for weeks.”
As her condition worsened, Lynne eventually became a patient at our In Patient Centre
“They were able to make her much more comfortable than I could at home and I was so happy that she was receiving such a high level of care.
“I have nothing but praise for the care and compassion she received and it is a great comfort to know that under the circumstances she received the best support she could have wished for and I will be forever grateful to everyone at St Luke’s for giving me that comfort.”
Just a short while later Peter decided he wanted to give something back in recognition of all St Luke’s had done for him.
“Lynne’s death was the most awful experience but St Luke’s was just a wonderful support,” he says.
“Now I love being a St Luke’s volunteer, happy that I am supporting all the services and enjoying being part of a great team based at the Donation Centre.
“The work is very interesting especially the variation in items that are actually donated and there is a great mixture of skills and experience amongst all the volunteers.
“I tend to specialise in musical instruments, especially guitars, identifying the makes and then making any repairs and making sure they are playable.
“It’s fascinating, though, seeing the great range of things that are donated and seeing how much money they can make online.”
Peter spends every Thursday morning with the eBay team and is encouraging other people to follow his lead.
“I have seen what St Luke’s do and I knew they need funds to continue doing that work,” he says,.
“There’s a real team atmosphere, we have a joke and a laugh and above everything else, I enjoy it.”
There are currently several opportunities available to volunteer with the St Luke’s eBay team, including roles photographing and listing items for sale.
To find out more about St Luke’s Hospice volunteering opportunities visit volunteering