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Living Legacies – RVS

Royal Voluntary Service volunteers in Staffordshire are making a significant impact on their community by creating a happy place for people to come together, enjoy a range of activities and build lifelong friendships.

Living Legacies Exhibition

Royal Voluntary Service is one of Britain’s largest volunteering organisations providing vital, responsive services which support public health, social care and wellbeing.The volunteers support the NHS by working with healthcare teams and in communities providing practical help and emotional support when people are struggling to cope.

William Edwards, a former soldier in the armed forces, has been attending his local Royal Voluntary Service for the past eighteen months.

The 85-year-old was encouraged to join the community group after speaking to his GP about improving his mental health and wellbeing.


William, who served as both a Staffordshire Police Officer and Fraud Investigator until he retired, was accustomed to being a source of support for others and had never needed to seek support for himself.

William Edwards, volunteer at the Royal Voluntary Service said:

Coming here gives me a reason to get up in the morning.

 “When Covid struck, like many people my age, I didn’t leave the house for two and a half years.

“We do quizzes, exercises, play games, go out for meals, all kinds of things that I wouldn’t be doing otherwise.


“I’ve even discovered how to play hangman which everyone found funny as they’d learned it in school; but I’d never played it before coming here.

“Joining the Royal Voluntary Service gives you the opportunity to not only get out of the house, but to meet people like myself – people that live alone and have similar interests.

“Without this place, I’d be sitting at home, on my own and not doing much. But now, I look forward to coming here twice a week and have met so many people that I now consider to be very close friends of mine – it’s brilliant.”




Florence Walker, 74, volunteers at the Royal Voluntary Service after retiring as a clerical officer for Staffordshire Police after 37 years.

The 50s rock and roller was determined not to sit at home and do nothing after retirement and was committed to continue to help and support her community.

Florence, volunteer at the Royal Voluntary Service said:

Your brain doesn’t close down when you retire and neither does your body.



“I keep active, I still do my rock and roll, and I walk everywhere; I’m on the go all the time.

“Once I retired, I made sure I got into volunteering to put my skills to good use. I mainly do clerical work on reception, but I support wherever needed – I help out in the kitchen, organise activities and day trips – anything I can do to do my bit.

“For some, coming here is the only contact and interaction they have. They wouldn’t see anybody without this group, which is a shame because they’re such lovely people, you couldn’t ask for a nicer group of people to meet.”




Liz began volunteering after struggling with her mental health following the loss of her husband in 2015.

Liz said: “Volunteering is honestly my passion. I meet so many different, amazing people and I get to learn about their lives and see them go from feeling a little lost to laughing and enjoying themselves.

“It’s such a warm and friendly atmosphere, I’ve built good relationships with members and volunteers – I think it helps us all in one way or another.

“I’m a big believer in getting the word out about mental health, it’s depressing to be home alone by yourself, I’ve been there.



“Coming here is the biggest life change for me, I’m doing things I didn’t think I ever could do. We are all treated the same and that’s a big thing for many people in life.”

“My counselor recommended I volunteered here, and I’ll be forever grateful – it’s done wonders for my mental health, and I really enjoy it.”

To find out more visit: The UK National Volunteer Charity | Royal Voluntary Service




Dicover more inspiring Living Legacy stories here.  Or why not submit your own story or suggest someone that you feel has an inspiting postive ageing story

Living Legacies Exhibition

Here are some other small actions you can do right now to help people in your community to live more independently.


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