THROUGHOUT the first week of June, Winston’s Wish – the UK’s leading childhood bereavement charity – will be celebrating the incredible contribution made by its dedicated teams of volunteers.

Volunteers’ Week 2014 marks the 30th anniversary of the annual event and plays a huge part in raising the profile of England’s 22 million volunteers, encouraging others to get involved.

Winston’s Wish will be embracing the week by recognising and thanking over 500 dedicated individuals who undertake a variety of tasks, including helping out at support groups for bereaved children, giving a helping hand at fundraising events and providing valuable admin support in the Winston’s Wish offices.

People from all walks of life value and enjoy their volunteering experience with Winston’s Wish.

They become involved with the charity for many different reasons – to develop skills and experience towards a career, to be involved in something that feels important to them and make a difference, to meet new people and have fun in the process.

Winston’s Wish helps children rebuild their lives after the death of a parent or sibling, enabling them to face the future with confidence and hope.

Fiona Talwar-Lomberg, Chief Executive of Winston’s Wish, expressed her thanks to the volunteering team: “Our wonderful, dedicated volunteers give us their time, energy, enthusiasm and expertise whenever they are called upon to help. They are an integral part of Winston’s Wish and enable us to support even more bereaved children who need our help”.

Winston’s Wish volunteer Steve Edgell was nominated by Winston’s Wish for ‘Volunteer Hero’ in the 18+ category of the annual Heart of Gloucestershire Awards later this month and has been volunteering for Winston’s Wish for 22 years.

Steve commented: “I think Winston’s Wish is a really important charity to support.

When I started, it was pioneering – and it continues to reach out not only to bereaved children in Gloucestershire, but in other parts of the country too.

I am pleased to have been a part of the charity’s journey.

I have supported young children and teenagers who have been bereaved for a variety of reasons, including suicide, murder and manslaughter, and illness.

I joined because I wanted to help and support bereaved children make sense of the death and rebuild their lives”.