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Post | November 2021 | Trustees | 2 min read

Sue's Story

Written by Kerry Wills
Photo of Sue and her dog, Florence

“If you are interested in becoming a Trustee, I would highly recommend it. You can pursue your interests and hobbies and make a real difference to a charity you care about!"

Before joining local charity, Spark Somerset, Sue spent eight years working with young people at YMCA Mendip and is passionate about helping them to thrive. Since 2011 she has been a Trustee for Youth With a Future (YWAF), a Mendip-based charity which offers vital financial support to local young residents. Here, she explains what inspired her to get involved.  

“During my time at YMCA Mendip, I worked with many homeless and vulnerable young people and got to see first-hand the enormous difference a grant from YWAF can make. 

“We had one join us young man who had become homeless due to a family breakdown and having been bullied by his older siblings. He had missed out on a lot of his education but still managed to pass his GCSEs with good grades. Once he settled into life at the YMCA, he decided he wanted to go to college to learn a trade and secured a place on a bricklaying course. YWAF gave him a grant to purchase the PPE, tools and equipment he needed as well as stationery and books and help with bus fares. Thanks to our support, he was able to complete the course and eventually went on to find long-term employment. 

"This is just one example of the great work YWAF does. I felt inspired to get involved and help them to support even more people like this, so I offered my services.  

“We are a small team, and I am both Trustee and a Secretary. I am mainly responsible for fundraising, which includes writing funding applications and letters to grant-making trusts, coordinating our annual Christmas appeal and organising community fund-raising events. The money we raise helps local young people to move on positively in their lives.  

“Due to the pandemic, we have had our usual fundraising activities severely curtailed, but I have still managed to raise £4,000 for the charity. The money we raise makes a massive difference to the people we support, and this is what spurs me on!  

“I would love to be able to commit more time to volunteering, however, my current personal circumstances mean it isn’t possible. As my parents get older, I need to support them more which often means I can’t offer as much time as I would like but do what I can. 

“If you are interested in becoming a Trustee, I would highly recommend it. You can pursue your interests and hobbies and make a real difference to a charity you care about! 

Ann Ralls, fellow Trustee and Chair of YWAF said: 

“Sue has made a huge impact on YWAF since she became a Trustee. She brings years of experience and is so enthusiastic about fundraising and the difference our grants make to young people. She very quickly took on the role of secretary, but she is also our chief fundraiser and all-round ‘Mrs Amazing.’ She has a proactive, can-do attitude and never misses an opportunity to increase our profile and raise more funds. Her belief and her joy in what YWAF does is palpable and infectious and she is an incredible asset to the charity.” 

To find out more about becoming a Trustee in Somerset, please click the link below.

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