Meet Sarah

Why did you start volunteering with Candlelighters? 

Our younger son was diagnosed with a Willms Tumour (a rare form of kidney cancer) as a toddler.  As a family we experienced first-hand how amazing Candlelighters are at supporting families through their child’s cancer journey.  My career history is in admin, PA and project support; I took time off work to be a full-time Mum following our son’s recovery and wanted to offer my administrative and event support skills to give back to Candlelighters as a volunteer.  I also wanted to update my IT skills having been out of an office environment for several years. 

When did you start volunteering? 

September 2023. 

Which area of Candlelighters do you volunteer in and what do you do day to day? 

I volunteer with Iain and Chris in the corporate partnerships side of the Fundraising team.  We research new corporate sponsors, organise business events and regularly keep businesses up to date with the latest corporate sponsorship opportunities.  I volunteer once a week and approach new business contacts about sponsoring Candlelighters, I send out mailshots about business fundraising events, update business contacts in our database and provide administrative support for corporate events. 

Sarah (second from the left) at the Candlelighters Business Collaboration Event in April 2024

What has volunteering with Candlelighters done for you? 

I’ve gained valuable IT and administrative skills;  I’ve learned more about the varied support that Candlelighters provides and met new colleagues and stakeholders.  As a mature returner to work, volunteering with Candlelighters has increased my confidence greatly and provided me with a varied and enjoyable role that I look forward to each week. 

What has your experience been like volunteering with Candlelighters? 

Everyone across the organisation is friendly, approachable, great fun and great at what they do.  It makes it a fabulous place to volunteer.   In addition, you are supported as a volunteer by a volunteer coordinator, provided with a lot of support, training and regular one-to-ones to ensure the role helps you progress with your transferable skills. 

What do you do outside of volunteering? 

I work part-time in a great retail role in Leeds, I also like creating textile art, learning languages and travelling. 

Is there anything you would say to someone who wanted to start volunteering at Candlelighters? 

I would say that you will really enjoy volunteering with Candlelighters. It is such a positive and fun environment.  The teams are lovely, volunteer roles are varied and the knowledge that you are helping families through their child’s cancer journey make this an incredibly rewarding role. 

Why do you think people should consider volunteering? 

It enriches your life and the lives of those that need support and provides you with transferable skills for your career.  

Is there anything else you’d like to say about being a volunteer at Candlelighters? 

If you are thinking of volunteering – Candlelighters offers great opportunities. 

You will really enjoy volunteering with Candlelighters. It is such a positive and fun environment.