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Oldest volunteer celebrates her 97th birthday volunteering in a charity shop in Leamington

Audrey celebrated her 97th birthday volunteering in a Save the Children charity shop in Leamington

This week Audrey Gerrans turned 97 behind the till at Save the Children, Leamington, where she has worked for more than 12 years.

Audrey credits over two decades of volunteering for keeping her mind sharp and has been working in charity shops since moving to Leamington in 1998.

Audrey is setting an example to the younger generation with her work ethic. This week when her shift coincided with her birthday, she refused to take the day off and is calling for young volunteers to join the team so she can retire before she reaches 100.

She comments: “I’m happy to carry on volunteering at the shop because we are short staffed. Not so many people have time to do charity work these days, but if we get some more volunteers to join us for three or four hours a week, I may be able to think about retiring!”

Other volunteers helped Audrey celebrate and decorated the shop with birthday balloons and banners. Audrey was born in 1923 and grew up in Kent. She now volunteers once a week on Thursday afternoons at Save the Children, Leamington.

She comments: “Working on the till keeps my brain ticking and it’s just lovely chatting to our customers. My body may be feeling a bit tired these days, but my mind is still pretty good. I’ve still got all my marbles, as we say!”

Before she retired Audrey was a medical library assistant at Frenchay hospital in Bristol and after her retirement stayed on to work there as a volunteer. Following the death of her husband Joe in 1997, she settled in Leamington to be near children and grandchildren.

A week on from her 97th birthday Audrey is available in store for interviews on Thursday 12th February.

Victoria Rose, Retail Marketing & Brand Manager comments: “Audrey’s work ethic is incredible, and I hope she inspires more people to come and join our volunteer teams. There are many different jobs available in our stores from sorting through new treasure, to chatting to supporters on the shop floor, making the till ring or window dressing – every volunteer plays a huge role in helping us raise funds to support vulnerable children both here in the UK, and around the world.”

Find out more about joining a team at one of Save the Children’s charity shops: www.savethechildren.org.uk/how-you-can-help/volunteer.