“It’s been a really positive experience for me” – Mary says there are plenty of benefits to volunteering for EACH

Creative shop worker Mary Hyder has spoken of the “mental and emotional” benefits of volunteering for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH).

The 69-year-old puts her skills to good use by helping at the charity’s Swaffham shop.

Mary volunteers in the shop every Monday morning and spends much of her week making things like bunting, to grace the windows of the Market Place store.

She has been helping since retiring last March and was speaking during EACH’s We Need You campaign.

The fortnight-long recruitment drive is an initiative to encourage more volunteers to step forward and help in one of the charity’s 44 shops.

“My main role is to dress the window and do the interior displays,” said Mary.

“I love it as it gives me an outlet for my creativity. I make bunting most weeks and that gives me a focus during the week at home, too.

“I also love being part of the team. That connection with others is so important.

“We have some lovely customers and most of them like to have a chat.

“The other thing I really like is that, because Swaffham isn’t a particularly big town, working in the shop really gives me a sense of community. It’s all about that connection with others.”

Mary, who celebrates her 70th birthday in April, says volunteering is an entirely positive experience and would love to see others get involved.

“It’s been a really positive experience for me,” she said.

“It’s like anything else, I guess, in that you take from it by making an effort and giving something of yourself.

“However, the mental and emotional benefits are so worth the effort and I’d heartily recommend volunteering to anyone with a little time on their hands.”

The Swaffham shop is open from 9am until 5pm Monday to Saturday.

For more information about volunteering, head to www.each.org.uk/get-involved/volunteering or email volunteerservices@each.org.uk


Notes to Editors

“We’d heard about EACH and knew they were a fantastic cause that had supported families we knew, but we never thought we’d be the ones that needed them! Sadly, as fantastic as it is, their service will always be required, and every child who needs their help deserves to have it.”

  • We care for children and young people with life-threatening conditions across Cambridgeshire, Essex, Norfolk and Suffolk, and support their families.
  • We offer families flexibility and control over where they receive their care and support, including where their child dies – at home, in hospital or at one of three hospices at Milton (Cambridge), The Nook (Norfolk) and The Treehouse (Ipswich).
  • Our family-centred approach includes specialist nursing care, symptom management support, short breaks, wellbeing activities, therapies and counselling, all meeting the individual needs of the child, young person and whole family.
  • We are recognised as leaders in our field, with a reputation for excellence and commitment to pioneering development and innovation.
  • We rely on voluntary donations for the majority of our income and this year need to raise £5.5 million from fundraising and £5.4 million in income from our shops. The year before the pandemic we received just 16% of our total income from statutory sources.
  • EACH Royal Patron – Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge.
  • For more information about EACH, including forthcoming events and how you can help raise funds, visit www.each.org.uk or call the Norfolk fundraising office on 01508 500894.

Keep in touch:







For further information about this release please contact:

Matt Plummer | Media and PR Manager | 07738 328058 | Matt.Plummer@each.org.uk

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