Ambassadors

Our ambassadors are a network of volunteers who represent the charity and help to raise awareness of what we do.

Paul Chahidi

Paul Chahidi is a Tony and Olivier nominated British stage and screen actor, who is well-known for playing Reverend Francis Seaton in the hit BBC TV show, This Country. Paul grew up in Summertown, Oxford, and has a personal connection to Sobell House, after his father was cared for by our team in 2015.

I’m thrilled to be Sobell House’s Celebrity Ambassador and to be able to help raise awareness of this incredible place that looked after my Dad with such exceptional care and compassion.

Alex Goodey

My father died in 2018 at Sobell House, and I was taken aback by the care and compassion of the staff towards their patients and families. A few months later, my wife and I held a charity quiz night to raise money for the hospice and this was when I found out about the Community Ambassador role. I felt that becoming an Ambassador was a way I could help to give something back to the charity and also help to raise awareness of the amazing place that made my father’s last few weeks far more bearable for him and us. I am regularly amazed by the novel ways that people raise money and I enjoy explaining to them how their funds will be used. The charity has such a diverse range of services, and most people are only aware of one or two of them unless they have had a direct connection.

Greg Birdseye

My wife, Penny, was referred to Sobell House in the late summer of 2016 after a number of treatments in the Churchill Hospital for lung cancer. In all, Penny had three stays in the hospice for assessment and care, and when at home had regular visits from the community palliative care team. I will always be grateful to everyone at Sobell House – doctors, nurses, therapists and all the support staff and volunteers – for doing as much as they possibly could to help Penny and provide comfort and advice. When she went to Sobell House for her last few days she knew she would be made comfortable, and I know she felt at peace. Since Penny died, I have been more than happy to give my time to help continue the wonderful work of the hospice as a Community Ambassador. I help spread the word about Sobell House at events and fundraising talks, and gratefully accept donations on their behalf.

Jo Lennon

Like many Sobell House volunteers, I wanted to give something back after they supported me, my husband and our children during my husband’s illness and death. I became a ward volunteer for a few years but, with family and work commitments, I had to give it up. Being invited to become an Ambassador was a perfect opportunity and it is so rewarding. I get to meet some incredible people and am always truly humbled to hear their stories and what they do to fundraise. I leave every event walking on air, energised by the overflowing goodness of the human spirit and the passion and love that people have for Sobell House and its work. Sobell House wraps you up in a huge, happy hug just when you need it the most, and that is why I love being an Ambassador. I hope to meet you at a future event or fundraiser!

Maudie Beardall

Until 2001, my family and I had never heard of Sobell House and never in our wildest dreams thought we would need their help and support. That year, my husband suddenly became ill at the age of 49. He died at Sobell House in August 2002, and we were all given the most amazing care by the staff and volunteers. My two daughters and I have supported the hospice ever since, between us taking part in challenges such as a skydive, the London Marathon, and a fire walk. In 2003, I became a volunteer and have worked on reception every week since. I love being at the hospice meeting people, sometimes in a sad way, but overall, there is a feeling of warmth and calmness about the place. I became an Ambassador in 2019, which takes me to various venues to say a few words about the hospice and to thank people for their support.

Mike Wells

Sometime after the loss of my wife, I became a volunteer driver for Sobell House and was involved in the activities of what was then called the Day Centre (now Living Well). During this time, I became aware of the fundraising that is required to support the running of the hospice. My professional life involved public speaking, so I decided to use this skill and volunteer as a Community Ambassador. For many years I have enjoyed collecting cheques and giving both short and long talks about the hospice. Being a Community Ambassador is a great way to support Sobell House and help highlight what an important service they provide to the local community.

Paul Chahidi
Alex Goodey
Greg Birdseye
Jo Lennon
Maudie Beardall
Mike Wells

Interested in becoming a community ambassador?

If you are a confident public speaker, love meeting new people, and want to raise awareness of Sobell House at local events and functions, we’d love to hear from you!

Here are some of the ways you could help…

  • Attend cheque presentations on behalf of the charity to say thank you and share how the money raised will help to make a difference.
  • Deliver talks to local community groups, such as schools, faith groups, Rotary Clubs, Round Tables, and Women’s Institute groups about the work of the charity and how they can help us.
  • Organise local collections at venues such as supermarkets, garden centres, and shopping centres.
  • Oversee our information and fundraising stands at local events.

To express your interest, please contact Ariya from the Sobell House Hospice Charity team: ariya.nair@sobellhospice.org or 01865 857007.