10th June, 2013
If you ask Maurice about volunteering, you will soon discover that he has been volunteering for things all through his life. His first time was when he volunteered to join the army in 1942. Since then he has volunteered for all sorts of things.
For many years, he was a foster parent along with his wife Margaret, providing a home and stability to young people with real problems. As one thing leads to another, he became involved in youth care schemes and gradually become known among a network of people on various committees as somebody who could be relied upon to help where it was needed.
So it was that when Sarah Durrant was setting up the Headway Support Group in 1989, she persuaded Maurice, whom she knew from the Crossroads group, to join Headway as a volunteer. Maurice has been volunteering with Headway Cambridgeshire ever since, for 24 years.
Headway Cambridgeshire has changed and grown over the years. The family support group that Maurice helped from the beginning is now a registered charity offering specialist rehabilitation to adults with brain injury as well as real support to their family and carers.
As Headway Cambridgeshire changed, so did the support that Maurice offered. As a volunteer, Maurice has been flexible and adaptable, supporting and mentoring clients and staff. Over the years, Maurice has worked with clients in their sessions (many people remember ‘Maurice’s woodwork shed’ at Headway House), befriended and listened to clients during breaks and social activities, and assisted staff in a variety of administration tasks. Maurice even served for a few years as a Trustee. Now his time as a volunteer at Headway Cambridgeshire is to end.
Maurice said: ‘It has taken me a long time to come to this decision but in the end I made up my mind. I shall certainly miss coming once a week after all these years but at my old age it is the correct thing to do.’
To Headway Cambridgeshire, Maurice has served as a valued, trusted and loyal friend for 24 years, throughout the life of the organisation, which honoured both Maurice and his wife Margaret by making them lifelong friends of Headway Cambridgeshire at a small ceremony on Monday 10 June.
“ I struggled with a lot of issues, especially how I felt my father’s personality had changed and Headway Cambridgeshire helped me a lot at that time in my life. They made me feel much less alone and I’ll always be grateful for that. ”