As the St Luke’s resident quiz master, you could describe Peter Green as the man with all the right answers.
Peter leads fortnightly general knowledge quizzes at our Ecclesall Road South site and he also organises popular board game sessions.
Peter, who is one of the hundreds of people who give their time to St Luke’s for free every week, is now encouraging others to do the same by joining The Big Help Out, the national campaign to encourage people to support their local communities.
What makes his story slightly different though is that, like many of the people he supports with his volunteering, he himself has experienced living with cancer.
The retired businessman and managing director, who lives in Greenhill, was 50 when he was first diagnosed with leukaemia and became a volunteer leukaemia support group counsellor, eventually also launching a successful support group of his own.
“The minute you hear the words cancer and leukaemia you are terrified but here I am, I’m 65 now and I’m enjoying life,” he says.
Following retirement from business, however, Peter felt there was more volunteering he could do – which is when he found St Luke’s Patient and Family Services.
“I actually went to a volunteer event at Sheffield Town Hall, which is where I met the St Luke’s team and I joined Ecclesall Road South, originally as a Front of House person, greeting people, making them feel welcome and doing everything from serving lunches to filling the dishwasher,” he says.
The pandemic brought volunteering to a halt for a while but now Peter is back, hosting regular quiz sessions for the hospice’s bereavement group and for anybody else who wants to take part.
He also leads board game sessions and heads up the indoor curling sessions that have proved particularly popular.
“I really enjoy the contact with people and although you’d never ask what their condition is you do find that they start to talk and you sit and listen to stories that can be very moving,” he explains.
“That’s just one of the things you get out of volunteering – there’s also a great sense of camaraderie among the volunteers and you do get a sense of pride from being part of the team.
“One of the things that surprises me most is the number of people, and especially men, who don’t do any voluntary work, when there is a real dearth of male volunteers across the whole voluntary sector.
“Perhaps it’s a macho thing, perhaps they see it as very much a female thing to do but that’s not the case at all.
“I always say just come and do it because the rewards are so astounding – it helps your own sense of well-being and worth and you really do feel you are doing something worthwhile.
“It isn’t a big commitment, you can do a morning or an afternoon, three or four hours and it’s definitely worth giving it a go because you don’t know what you’re missing!”
To find out more about our volunteer opportunities and how to support The Big Help Out visit www.stlukeshospice.org.uk/big-help-out