Meet volunteer Sue Lucas #volunteersweek
Meet Sue Lucas, a long-term supporter of Bloodwise and member of our voluntary Grimsby & District Branch. Sue is here to tell you about some activities the Branch are working on and to give you some advice on starting up your own Bloodwise Branch.
Could you tell us about how you first became involved with Bloodwise?
I started to help out at the annual Shopping Extravaganza. This has been the branches biggest fundraiser each year and is now in its 27th year. My mother-in-law has been involved with the charity for 40 years & she asked me if I would help out selling raffle tickets. I met many people I knew at the Extravaganza and found it very enjoyable, it’s such a good atmosphere, lots of ladies drinking wine, shopping, enjoying time with friends, what’s not to like! That was about 11 years ago, I gradually became more involved & helped out where I could at other events & then just over 5 years ago I took on the role of branch secretary. I like organising so I guess it’s my ideal role!
Can you tell us a little bit about the Branch and any events you are working on?
The Grimsby & District Bloodwise committee is made up of local volunteers. The branch, which has raised over £1.1million since it was formed in 1962, is one of the charity’s longest serving voluntary branches. Over the years the committee have done, and will do almost anything to raise funds, gymkhana, hunter trials, shooting day, sponsored swim, silence, walks and discos. Carol concerts, teenage dances, cookery demonstrations, tennis tournaments, fashion shows, antique road show / fair and antique valuations, car boot sales and a cook book. Now there are 3 major fundraising events in the year, the Golf day in July, the Shopping Extravaganza in October & the Bikeathon just completed in May. We also do many bucket collections, at Tesco, Uncle Henry’s Farm Shop and the local Racecourse. It is at the Market Rasen Racecourse that our latest event took place; we are very excited to be undertaking a year’s partnership with the Racecourse, which was launched at Bloodwise Ladies Day on 3rd June. The partnership us the collection rights at 18 fixtures throughout this next year, including the prestigious Jess Glynne music night, The Betfred Ladies Day & Boxing Day, where crowds at just these 3 events can be expected to reach almost 30,000! This is a great opportunity for Bloodwise & the chance to get the message across about the work we do.
What’s been your most memorable moment during your time with Bloodwise?
Primarily it is the people I work with & come across that are most memorable, but organising the Shopping Extravaganza for the last 5 years has been all consuming! In 2012 we raised over £16,500 just at that one event, it feels like such an achievement and just drives me to want to do more.
What drives you to continue volunteering for Bloodwise?
Knowing that you are making a difference. Every penny counts & to think that the money we raise might be able to help save a life is very humbling. At each event I enjoy meeting our very loyal supporters, without them we could not do what we do.
What advice would you give anyone wishing to start their own Bloodwise Branch?
Make sure you have some likeminded people/friends to support you as it makes it so much easier if you have someone to bounce ideas off & help out. Start small & go from there, with a bit of motivation & drive you will be amazed what you can achieve, and remember you have a fantastic team in your Bloodwise region to help out & advise!
Find out more about volunteering for Bloodwise >