For the past three years, animal lover Anita Brown has given up her time and given a veterinary charity shop a helping hand.
The 64-year-old decided to give things a go at the PDSA charity shop in London Road, North End, Portsmouth, after her dogs were given support by health professionals who work for the PDSA.
She came to the shop with a wealth of experience after retiring from her job at Superdrug, where she had worked for 15 years.
Now all of her hard work at the shop, which raises funds for the treatment of sick and injured pets, has paid off after she was shortlisted in the charity’s annual Volunteer Awards.
PDSA store manager Janet Grigg put her name forward because she felt Anita had outstanding passion and commitment to the charity.
Anita, who works 15-and-a-half hours a week at the shop, is up against two other hopefuls in the Retail Volunteer of the Year category.
Janet says: ‘When Anita retired she wanted to do some good and decided to volunteer in between looking after her grandson.
‘She never has a bad word to say about anyone and she is consistently early for her three shifts and always turns up whatever the weather.’
PDSA area retail manager Annie Campbell adds that Anita is extremely dedicated in her role and is also great at helping new volunteers drive sales.
She says: ‘Sales are Anita’s favourite thing.
‘Give her a product to sell and she will.
‘Last year she sold 39 PDSA badges in four hours.’
Anita says she enjoys volunteering at the store and encourages others to give it a go.
‘When I retired from full- time work I decided to take a year off to have a rest.
‘I then found I missed the work and company and wanted to return to doing something I enjoyed in the retail environment.’
She adds: ‘I think the best bit is knowing that what I’m doing is supporting a worthwhile cause, working with a good team and I’ve made many new friends since I joined.
‘I would simply say to people just come in and give volunteering a try and help support PDSA.
‘If you’re on your own or retired and have some free time to spare, pop into any PDSA store and I can guarantee you will enjoy it.’
The shortlisted volunteers will be judged on their commitment to their roles.
The winners will be announced in the new year. To become a volunteer visit pdsa.org.uk/volunteering.