All the latest volunteering news

Volunteers looking at clothing

A message from Julie

This year, volunteers have collectively given over 1.8 million hours of time to volunteer in our shops!

This is an astounding collective total and we couldn’t be more grateful. You’ve played a part in Cancer Research UK’s shops once again achieving the best profit margin of all the major charity retailers, which was recently announced in the 2022 Charity Shops Survey.

This is a very busy time of year for our stores – during an even more challenging winter than usual. To those of you who have been able to support your local shop during this period, it’s very much appreciated. While we know that not all of you will be actively volunteering in your shop, we’re very grateful that so many of you champion Cancer Research UK in other ways. Whether you’ve been speaking about our work, raising money, or donating stock, however you’ve helped us this year, thank you.

Back in February, we were proud to see Cancer Research UK awarded the Investing in Volunteers accreditation for good practice in volunteer management. Since then, we’ve been working hard to maintain this high standard of volunteer experience. We know that it’s important we pause sometimes to celebrate the huge contribution volunteers make. So I’m delighted to confirm our budget for a festive gathering has gone up this year to £15 per person for both staff and volunteers. Please speak to your shop manager for more information about your team’s gathering. I hope you’ll enjoy the opportunity to come together with your team and reflect on everything you’ve made possible this year.

Wishing you peace and good health this festive season.

Julie Byard

Director of Trading

Thank you from the Volunteering team

A group of people are holding up a sign saying thank you

Together we’ve come so far. And it’s down to people like you – our incredible volunteers who support our shops, our events, our fundraising and more.

A huge thank you from the Volunteering team for all your support this year, and always.


An act of Christmas kindness

A young woman in a red starry jumper hugs an older woman in a blue cardigan

Angela has been volunteering at the Nottingham Friar Lane shop for almost 25 years. She considers the shop team as family and has always had a very special connection with Shop Manager Megan, and her mother, Jill.

Last year, realising that Angela was set to be alone on Christmas Day, Megan performed an extraordinary act of Christmas kindness - driving a 100-mile trip to collect Angela to spend the day with Megan's family.

A new welcome film for volunteers

A man is working at a laptop wearing a pink jumper and glasses

We're excited to launch our new induction film! It's for new volunteers, about how volunteers are supporting Cancer Research UK's progress. It highlights different ways to get involved and stories from volunteers Margaret and Mike about why they enjoy their time here. Even if you’re not new to the charity, why not have a watch?

We’ve also updated the ‘Welcome to Volunteering’ booklet. It includes useful information and help for your time volunteering with us - consider it your essential handbook. The latest version is here if you'd like to take a look, or you can watch the induction film below.

Dreaming of an eco festive season…

3 Christmas cards are pegged on a string by a fir tree

Did you know that Cancer Research UK Christmas cards are 100% recyclable? We also have a range of sustainable Christmas wrapping available on the online shop.

At Cancer Research UK we’re committed to reducing our environmental impact and these are a couple of ways we’re helping you to have a very merry eco Christmas.