Throughout April we will be speaking to some of our inspirational volunteers who have dedicated their time to the fight for every heartbeat.
In 2014 Luke Cameron was dubbed the 'Nicest Man in Britain' after he completed a good deed a day challenge for 365 days. In 2015 he is spending each week of the year volunteering for a different charity to complete the 'Nicest job in Britain'.
Luke spent a week volunteering in one of our book shops, a high street shop and a furniture and electrical store as well as spending a day with one of our volunteer drivers.
Luke said: “Of all the weeks on my Nicest Job journey, this week is the most special to me personally. I was born with a major hole between the two ventricles on my heart chamber, which had gone un-noticed until I was 8 years old.
"When discovered I was immediately rushed into Bristol children’s hospital for pioneering open-heart surgery. I would not be here if it was not for the BHF’s investment in research to discover new treatments."
Luke started his week in Cheltenham at the Books and Music store.
“I worked with two lovely women, Beryll and Gill, sorting through the bags of donations and cleaning them up ready to go on the shelves. They were fantastic, after living a full and prosperous life they wanted to spend some of their retirement out and about volunteering at the BHF, where their time is more than needed.
“The charity is incredibly professional in their approach providing training manuals and leaflets, manual handling guides and check sheets galore. Insuring every single volunteer is trained before getting started.”
On Tuesday we sent Luke out in our collection van. We offer a free collection service for any unwanted furniture or electrical goods.
“It was a pretty intense day, the store would get a call from a supporter saying they needed a ‘couple of bags’ collecting but a couple suddenly multiplied to 15 and you would have to do a couple of runs. Not that we were complaining.
“I am continually amazed by people’s generosity. Without donations and volunteers, these shops just would not function.”
Wednesday and Thursday was split between Swindon and Gloucester where Luke spent time in one of our High Street shops and a Furniture and Electrical shop.
More than just volunteering
“In my week with the BHF, I discovered that there is much more to volunteering than the feel good factor.
"The BHF love being able to give something back to their volunteers such as helping them get on the career ladder. I saw countless volunteers last week who were using volunteering as an opportunity to build credible experience and life skills to help them get into work. As a result, the charity often has a high turnover of volunteers because so many manage to get jobs because of the fact they have dedicated their time to volunteering.”
Volunteer with us
If you have been inspired by Luke’s volunteering experience we are always looking for more people to join our volunteer team.
Our volunteers are at the heart of the charity and we simply wouldn’t be able to continue our life saving work without them. Volunteering with the BHF for just half a day a month could fund one of our scientists to carry out lifesaving research for a whole hour.