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90-year-old Red Cross volunteer wins top Welsh award

30 June 2016

Red Cross volunteer Beryl Bennet giving her acceptance speech after winning a Welsh Volunteer of the Year award

This month a 90-year-old British Red Cross volunteer received a Volunteer of the Year award at a ceremony organised by Wales Council for Voluntary Action.

Beryl Bennett from Swansea received the award for her role running the Red Cross shop at Singleton Hospital for 26 years.

The Wales Volunteer of the Year Awards have been running since 2004 and aim to highlight the remarkable volunteer work of the people in Wales.

Beryl was presented with her award at a heart-warming ceremony at Cardiff Castle by BBC news journalist Siân Lloyd.

Running the shop

Beryl has managed the Red Cross shop in Singleton Hospital since 1990. She is responsible for receiving the weekly stock delivery, marking-up prices and overseeing the day-to-day running of the shop.

At the weekend she also carries out a stock check, organises the shop and stock room and places orders for the next delivery – all while cheerfully and compassionately serving patients, visitors and staff.

Last year, Beryl gave over 360 hours to the hospital shop as well as taking an active role in fundraising activities.

Remarkable achievement

Nikki Mather, service co-ordinator at the Red Cross who nominated Beryl for the award, said:

“Beryl has given the Red Cross over a quarter of a century of impeccable service. Never has she faltered in her commitment to the charity.

“She is seen as a sort of hero by her fellow volunteers and is treated with a great deal of respect and affection.

“We are very lucky to have such a dedicated volunteer and are all very proud of her achievement.”

This is not the first time that Beryl’s dedication to the Red Cross has been recognised. In 2005, Beryl was nominated for the award of Charity Champion in a South Wales award scheme. 

Beryl said that she was delighted to receive an award for her volunteer work.

“I very much enjoy my work with British Red Cross at Singleton Hospital and I am very grateful for the support of my fellow volunteers and Red Cross staff.”

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