Meet our Poppy Appeal volunteers

Each year thousands of wonderful volunteers descend on high streets, train stations and local supermarkets across the country to help raise vital funds during the Poppy Appeal.

We spoke to a few of our amazing Poppy Appeal Organisers who give up their own time to make sure the appeal runs like clockwork each year.

Sian Cameron

Sian Cameron will give up two weeks of her own free time to raise money during this year’s Poppy Appeal.

Sian has been the Legion’s Poppy Appeal Organiser for Hartlepool in the north east of England for the past 8 years after taking over from her father Ian who sadly suddenly passed away in 2010.

“The Poppy Appeal was something my dad was very proud of,” Sian says.

                           Irene Gilhespy and Sian Cameron

“He had a business in Hartlepool for a number of years and even though he had that business I like to think that his lasting legacy was his work with the Poppy Appeal.”

This year, Sian says she is on a mission to raise even more money and hopes to raise £63,000 across her region building on the incredible total her area raised last year.

“When my dad died his final total was £43,000, so it’s a bit of a long standing joke that I was adamant that I was beating him that first year. I was going all out to make sure, and we did and its steadily increased year-on-year. Last year we got it up to £62,000.”

Marley Haggan, Sian Cameron, Richy McElevenny & Jane Voss

Sian is passionate about the Poppy Appeal and honouring her father Ian’s legacy and has a great team of volunteers to help her.

“I’m very fortunate that there’s a group of people that prop me up and make sure that everything runs smoothly year-on-year. My friends, my family and people that I’ve met along the way in the last 8 years all work tirelessly.”

“You just get to meet some lovely lovely people. It really restores your faith in humanity. You see all sorts going on in the news that’s just awful but for two full weeks I just get to spend the weeks talking to some really amazing people from all walks of life.”

Rob Groom

Rob Groom, 27 , has been the Legion’s Poppy Appeal Organiser for Upton by Chester for five years.

The father-of-two manages 15 volunteers and together they deliver poppy tins to local businesses and schools and collect at supermarkets and on high streets.

“I have been involved with the Poppy Appeal for as long as I can remember, as I helped out when I was in the cubs and scouts,” Rob says.

                                Ruth Jones and Rob Groom

“I don’t have a Forces background but my grandfather served in the Second World War and was held as a Prisoner of War in the Middle East for three years, so I do this for him and for all those who served.”

Rob says: “It’s just nice to think that you’re giving something back, especially when you talk to beneficiaries at the Legion. You see how they have benefited and how their lives have changed and improved because of the support of the Poppy Appeal.”

Rob will be fundraising around his full time job, as well as caring for his two young children and is excited to be involved in the centenary year.


Sandra McWilliam, Ruth Jones and Rob Groom supporting the Poppy Appeal

“It’s a massive year for the Royal British Legion and the Poppy Appeal. It's quite exciting because we’re thinking ‘this is going to be really good’, ‘we're going to raise lots of funds for the Poppy Appeal’ and I think everyone’s just excited for it to kick off now.”

Alicia Beaty

Alicia Beaty, 19, from Royton, Oldham, has supported the Poppy Appeal since she was 10 years old selling poppies for 7 years before becoming the Secretary and a Poppy Appeal Organiser for the Legion’s Branch in Royton.

She has helped to raise almost £12,000 as she distributes poppies at her local church and holds an annual family fun day on Remembrance Sunday.

"I got involved with the Poppy Appeal when I was Rose Queen at church," Alicia says.

"I found it really interesting and our Remembrance event always raises lots of money as we have a DJ, face painting and food stalls. I love helping the Armed Forces community as they have given so much for us.”

“As a Poppy Appeal Organiser I order all the poppies, get all the poppies ready for delivery, I then help deliver the poppies with some others from our branch. I also organise our remembrance event at our local cricket club which is also a family fun day.”

Alicia said that running up to Remembrance Sunday and their family fun day they have stalls selling poppies all over area, including in local supermarkets Lidl and Asda.

Alicia Beaty with Poppy Appeal Organisers Mark Kelly and Roy Ward

Alicia will be supporting the Poppy Appeal alongside her studies at college, where she is studying early years and teaching.

“This year we have had more people wanting poppies from our branch, so I’m looking forward to seeing how much we’ve raise, hopefully more than last year where we doubled our amount from the year before.”

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Our support work is a lifeline for thousands of serving and ex-Service people and we can only do that with help from you. So please donate today, no gift is too small to make a difference. You can make a single donation or a regular gift.

 

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