Jean Ruck is pictured centre after being thanked for her volunteering within Holbeach Hospital. She was presented the bouquet and certificate by the hospital League of Friends' treasurer Judy Henfrey. Also pictured are Iris Cooper and Norman Adcock hospital director,, Rebecca Atkinson, secretary of the Holbeach and East Elloe Hospital Trust and Steven and Ayda Tompson of entertainment act Velvet Souls.

Thank you for 20 years of volunteering

It takes more than three hip operations and debilitating conditions to stop Jean Ruck from volunteering at Holbeach Hospital.

This month marks 20 years of the Holbeach resident helping out at the hospital through its League of Friends.

And at the monthly entertainment event she hosts for residents, this month with singing group Velvet Souls, the hospital surprised her with a bouquet.

Jean has only missed one of the musical entertainment sessions she’s put on in the last 13 years, despite the hip operations, complications from the latter of which have left her with mobility issues and she can no longer walk unaided.

That’s after the former civil servant volunteered for the League of Friends of the Holbeach and West Elloe Trust in 1998 after being forced to retire early aged 58 because of arthritis.

Jean said “I’ve been with the League of Friends 20 years and organising the events since 2005.

“I must have covered 100 sessions since then.

“I did miss one due to one of the operations, but I did get someone to cover me.

“With the League of Friends we play bingo every week and provide presents for the residents at their birthdays and Christmas.

“Volunteering here is very rewarding.

“When you see the difficulties some of the people have and you then see them overcome them, that’s a great feeling.”

Jean is a great grandmother of two and is determined to keep on volunteering and putting events on in the future.

Despite the fact she is beginning to suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome which affects her wrists.

Holbeach Hospital manager Maxine Winch, said: “In spite of the personal challenges Jean faces, she continues to support Holbeach Hospital both in her capacity as a member of our League of Friends and a Director of the hospital.

“We are very grateful for all the years of dedication to others that she has given.”

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