A HR training development specialist, who has family connections to Pendleside, has become its first dedicated volunteer co-ordinator in charge of its army of more than 500 volunteers.
In recent years Lisa Clarke has helped raise thousands of pounds herself for the hospice while her dad volunteered as a marshal on the Midnight Walk. All of their efforts happened after her mum was cared for as an outpatient when recovering from breast cancer several years ago.
Lisa takes up her role later this month after five years as HR advisor at advanced lighting manufacturer acdc in Barrowford. Previously she had run her own personal development coaching business for 10 years after having been training manager at Holland’s Pies for 15 years.
She began her career in HR working at the Hotel Intercontinental in London before moving on to the Sheraton Park Lane Hotel as training manager.
At acdc she was part of the business’s team that raised more than £12,000 in Pendleside’s Corporate Challenge three years ago.
She said: “I want to make people who volunteer for the hospice enjoy a positive experience both for themselves, for the staff and for the patients.
“Both at acdc and Holland’s Pies you felt you belonged to a big family and I believe that is the same working at Pendleside. I want to help grow that family, help people come together and share their experiences.”
Lisa, who is married with teenage children, went on: “I would like to ensure that the volunteers we recruit are totally reliable and, in some cases, can act as mentors to the newer recruits.
“I would like to see us create a kind of buddy system where people can look after each other and work even more closely together. It would also be good to create a representative group of volunteers who can speak on behalf of everyone and offer positive ideas on how we can move forward.
“The volunteers are a hugely important body of people at Pendleside. In fact, without them we wouldn’t be able to exist and goodness knows what would happen if Pendleside wasn’t there.”
Lisa added: “As soon as I saw the job advertised I thought it was just me. I have such a strong feeling for Pendleside I couldn’t wait to apply and try and get the job.”
Helen McVey, chief executive of Pendleside, said: “We are so pleased Lisa is joining us. She brings with her a wealth of experience which will massively help us move the role of the volunteer and the whole operation forward.”