A 75-year-old woman from Eastwood has been praised as an ‘amazing’ and ‘wonderful’ volunteer at a reception hosted by royalty.
Sandra Talmey was one of the VIP guests at the Royal Voluntary Service (RVS) event, and met Camilla, Duchess Of Cornwall, who is the charity’s president.
The reception was held at Clarence House in London to mark the launch of ‘Our Amazing People’, a campaign to celebrate the talents and skills of the elderly and the contribution they make to society.
Sandra was hailed for the work she has done for the RVS over the last 14 years, working in its cafes at Nottingham City Hospital where she not only serves refreshments but also provides comfort for anxious patients.
“We were delighted to invite Sandra to attend this celebration,” said Catherine Johnstone, chief executive of the RVS. “Our volunteers do wonderful things in their communities, and Sandra devotes a great deal of her time to the charity. It’s her sort of commitment that makes the difference to thousands of lives of older people throughout Britain.”
Sandra was one of a select number of volunteers to be invited to the reception, which was also attended by well-known celebrities, such as RVS ambassadors Dame Patricia Routledge, Felicity Kendal and Wayne Sleep.
She said: “This is a moment I will treasure for the rest of my life. It was such an intimate, cosy setting, so everyone felt relaxed, and it was an honour to meet the Duchess Of Cornwall.
“I love volunteering at the hospital and have made some great friends over the last 14 years. Being in hospital or visiting friends can be a difficult time, so I want to be there to lend a friendly face and ear.”
Each year, the RVS’s 25,000 volunteers, many of whom are over 65, give 500,000 working days through their service. Over the next few months, the charity will be launching a drive to recruit more, helping them into volunteering jobs or to set up activities and clubs.