Hidden Heroes 2019 - Volunteer category winner
Emmaus UK has teamed up with Room to Reward to offer Emmaus companions, volunteers, trustees, staff and those supported by the charity the opportunity to be recognised by their peers and win a two night break to reward them for the work they do for Emmaus. Room to Reward was created to say thank you to “Hidden Heroes” - the inspirational people who do so much in the name of charity. Winners are awarded a two night bed and breakfast hotel stay, for themselves and a guest, at a choice of hotels throughout the UK and Europe.
Judith (Jude) volunteers at Emmaus Suffolk and works on various arts, crafts and upcycling projects. Many of her items are on display at the Emmaus Suffolk shop and she is incredible at inspiring others to make their own creations too.
Jude works with other companions as a peer mentor encouraging them to get involved, be creative and build on their confidence. She always has time for everybody and never fails to genuinely listen. When they celebrate birthdays (whether it is a member of staff or a companion), Jude will make a bespoke handcrafted card and often includes a little gift. Jude regularly repairs and alters customers clothes, as well as adjusting and adding personal touches to clothing that is purchased in the Emmaus Suffolk shop.
Jude has a great rapport with customers, who often come in just to have a cup of tea and a chat. It is through these chats that Jude has encouraged others to volunteer for Emmaus Suffolk, motivated by her to build their skills and confidence.
Jude is described by all as a ray of sunshine, who comes in and regardless of who you are, she will stop and chat and make time for you. She is a very special person who will always encourage you and make you leave Emmaus Suffolk feeling positive.'