A St Giles Hospice retail volunteer is celebrating after being crowned ‘Young Volunteer of the Year’ at the Charity Retail Awards 2023.
Jed Exton has been volunteering at the St Giles store in Tamworth since 2019. St Giles relies on volunteers, like Jed, to successfully operate their retail network. This helps to fund specialist palliative and end of life care, free of charge for people living with terminal illnesses, as well as providing support for their families and carers.
Jed’s unwavering dedication has not only been of exceptional value to St Giles but has also allowed him to overcome the challenges faced when working with autism.
Jed recalls “When I started at the St Giles store I was in a difficult spell, I struggled with certain environments and could be susceptible to noise and sensory overload. Working with the team has helped me grow and discover new interests. For me even being nominated for an award is a landmark achievement, so to win means a great deal. Volunteering has helped me to come out of my shell whilst also understanding my capabilities.”
Throughout his time volunteering, Jed has shown particular interest in the rare and geographical items that are donated.
He said: “It is very interesting to see what gets donated to the store, we often get unusual or rare items, more recently seeing a first edition Charles Dickens book and a crystal vase from the besieged Mariupol, Ukraine. I have a particular interest in the old atlases and maps that are donated and enjoy having the opportunity to properly research and care for such products.”
Head of Retail Emma Yates said: “Jed has volunteered with St Giles Hospice, in our Tamworth store, since 2019. His commitment to the team and his local community has been wonderful to witness. We’re so thankful for his contribution and are beyond happy that his commitment and hard work has been nationally recognised.”
St Giles Hospice has a network of 21 charity shops as well as an eBay store. Every item purchased helps to provide care for local people, and their families, living with an incurable illness.
For more information on volunteering or donating your items, visit: www.stgileshospice.com