Meet Louise, A volunteer Family Support Worker

Between 1-7 June, we are celebrating ‘Volunteers’ Week’ by highlighting the help we receive from 360 volunteers throughout the year. Without the 31,000 hours a year of invaluable support our volunteers provide, we would not be able to help as many families caring for a child with a life threatening or terminal illness.

Our volunteers fulfill vital tasks including office and retail support, helping at events, fundraising and supporting the care teams. Louise Braithwaite, a mum-of-two from Kendal has been volunteering with Rainbow Trust for the past four years and explains why her one day a week commitment has transformed her life.

Louise splits her time between Rainbow Trust’s Preston drop-in group and the homes of children that the charity supports.

“It was a no-brainer for me as I love working with children. The drop-in group is a soft play area where the parents can bring their children. The children get to play and the parents get to meet others in a similar situation and have lunch together.”

On the other weeks, she helps a family at home.

“The child I go to visit loves music and I spend two hours with him at his home. This allows mum to catch up on some of her jobs whilst he is being entertained. It’s only when you put yourself in the family’s position that you understand just how much a bit of help can change their lives, but I’m happy to do it.”

Louise’s life as a volunteer isn’t just about giving back. She genuinely loves what she does.

“I love children and love my time with Rainbow Trust. I have also met some great people through my volunteering, so it’s been an amazing experience for me and the families,” says Louise.

She adds: “If anyone was thinking of volunteering I would suggest they get in touch with Rainbow Trust. There are so many different roles available, depending on what you feel comfortable with. You could help in the office with the paperwork or be a volunteer driver. The options are endless, depending on what your skills are and what time you’re looking to commit.”

Andrea Kelley, Volunteer Development Manager at Rainbow Trust adds:

“We’d like to say a huge thank you to all our volunteers who help play a part in the way we operate. Whether it’s a day a week or a few hours a month, it really does make a difference. We couldn’t do it without their support, dedication and hard work.”

To find out more about the different volunteering opportunities, please call Andrea Kelley on 01372 220043 or email volunteering@rainbowtrust.org.uk