Jean’s rockin’ 85th birthday bash

Jean Boyes (left) and Saint Michael's Starbeck store manager Kim Mays (right).

Jean Boyes has dedicated more than 23 years of her life to volunteering for Saint Michael’s; she’s spent 15 years volunteering at the inpatient unit (IPU), she’s shaken a tin in street collections and she’s been volunteering since the opening of two Saint Michael’s shops; Starbeck and Knaresborough.

So we were delighted that Jean wanted to share the milestone of her 85th birthday with Saint Michael’s; organising a rock’n’roll birthday party that took place on Saturday October 21 and raised an astounding amount of over £1500.

More than 150 people attended on the night, dancing and jiving away to the 60s stylings of The Diamonds at The Manhattan Club.

Pictured above with Starbeck shop manager Kim Mays, the pair spent the last year organising the event in the hope that Jean could mark this milestone raising money for a charity that is extraordinarily close to her heart.

Jean with the band The Diamonds at The Manhattan Club.

“It was an absolutely fabulous night. I did an event like this when I was 70 for Saint Michael’s and we’ve already booked in to do my 90th!” said Jean.

Jean started volunteering after hearing a presentation on the many ways people can get involved with the hospice. This led her in the direction of the IPU.

“I went for an interview up at the hospice and they asked me straight away, ‘when can you start?’ and I said, ‘whenever you like!’ and they said, ‘How about tomorrow?’ So I began volunteering at the IPU the next day.

“The IPU was wonderful, I got to spend time talking to the patients and making tea, chatting to their family and friends, and making cakes and being a listening ear.

“After 15 years of walking the three miles to and from the hospice though and hearing of the shop in Starbeck being planned to open, I thought ‘oh I could do that’. And so I started at Starbeck the day it opened.”

Jean’s manager Kim describes her as an ‘invaluable volunteer’ who she can call upon any time. “Jean was volunteering at the IPU at the same time as working here and she is still here and I can still ring her up any time and ask her for help; she always will if she can.” said Kim.

Jean has no plans to leave her volunteering role any time soon, stating, “I don’t think I would ever leave. It’s such a worthwhile thing and I like to think we are doing our bit.”

We hope you will join us in wishing Jean a very happy 85th birthday and thanking her for all that she does as one of our 600+ very valuable volunteers.

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