‘The only moment we have is now’
Name: Shirley Whalley. Which organisation are you involved with? Music Volunteer for Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CWP) – Greenways Assessment and Treatment Unit, Macclesfield. How did you become a volunteer? Wanting to make use of skills I had used in paid work, I contacted CWP for details of volunteer opportunities and ended up doing something completely different! What do you enjoy most about your role there? The variety of people I meet and as they get to know me a little, learning from them, seeing them expressing how they feel in music/song/ movement. Making music allows us to show a bit more of the inside of ourselves, co-operate and have fun. What has been your most memorable/ funniest moment while you have been volunteering? There have been many but I remember a young woman singing her favourite song with me, and learning that later she had sung karaoke for the first time with her family in a local pub. We must never underestimate the importance of seemingly simple things.
Then there’s the young man who made up songs about Virgin Pendolino trains… I could go on... Where is your favourite place in Macclesfield? Anywhere in the hills above Macclesfield – when I am out walking everything else falls away and I am where I belong. Ideally how would you spend every day? Exactly as I do now – lots of variety. What was the best holiday you have been on? Last weekend walking the hills above Grasmere on a bright clear day with the sound of rushing water all the way – magical. If money was no object what would you do? Buy some woodland which could be planted and maintained for my family – somewhere we could go and camp and relax and enjoy what really matters. What one piece of advice would you give? The only moment we have is right now – make the most of it. What was your first job? Junior secretary at an architects’ practice in Macclesfield. What is on your CD / MP3 player? Right now I am playing Grace Petrie and The Benefits Culture album Love Is My Rebellion – gets me dancing
round the room! What is your favourite TV show? At the moment, Masterchef – I love cooking and watching others cook! What are you reading at the moment? History of the Rain by Niall Williams. What is your biggest inspiration? Friendships and A.A. Milne who said “The things that make me different are the things that make me.” – I would recommend everyone to read Winnie The Pooh! Who would you like to invite to dinner? Everyone welcome – bring and share and we’ll dance afterwards!
●● Shirley Whalley is a music volunteer for Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (CWP)