North east charity says thank you to its volunteers

Kirsty Anderson Inverurie Anne Marie Robson CLAN House

North east charity says thank you to its dedicated volunteers

A north-east charity is holding held eventsto thank its volunteers, as part of the national Volunteers’ Week.

CLAN Cancer Support, which has centres across the north-east including Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Moray, Orkney and Shetland, relies upon 400 volunteers who support people affected by cancer. The charity held various events at its centres across the region to thank volunteers including a summer party, afternoon teas and lunches.

The volunteers help the charity in providing support to clients as well as working at CLAN’s events and in the charity’s numerous shops.

Anne Marie Robson volunteers at CLAN House in Aberdeen, supporting people affected by cancer. She said: “Volunteering fits with my lifestyle. I am busy, but I wanted to do something worthwhile. We’re the first point of contact for clients coming in to CLAN. We provide emotional support and signpost to the wide range of CLAN services. I just love it. Every shift I feel as if I have helped someone.”

Volunteers at CLAN all receive extensive training, and the team works together to support one other.Arlene McFarlane works as a support volunteer at CLAN’s centre in Banchory. She said: “Like so many others, our family has been affected by cancer and so I felt that I was well placed to empathise with those in that situation. As an Orcadian, I know of many who have benefitted greatly from being able to use CLAN Haven when coming from Orkney for treatment and appreciate how important the service is to the islands."

CLAN’s volunteer manager, Fiona McPherson, said: “CLAN could not provide the services it does without volunteers. From people who work in our shops and help out at our fundraising events, to the support workers at our centres across the region who welcome anyone who is affected by cancer. Every single volunteer plays a vital role.

Dr Colette Backwell, CLAN CEO, added: “The services provided by CLAN are free to all. We are available not just in the city and towns but also in local communities through our outreach services, so we rely heavily on the hard work, professionalism and kindness shown by our volunteers.

“We have volunteers of all ages, men and women, from all walks of life. Everyone brings their own unique skills and personalities which makes for a fantastic team. However, everyone shares a desire to support other people and a compassionate nature.

“The training we provide enables our volunteers to listen carefully to clients and identify which services can best meet their needs, and we work hard to make sure our volunteers get the support they need as well. Volunteers’ Week is an opportunity to highlight the important work everyone does, whether it is at one of our centres across Moray, Aberdeenshire and the Northern Isles, at one of our shops, or at one of our fundraising events. On behalf of the CLAN board, the staff and our clients, we say thank you."

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