ROYAL Southampton's League of Friends (LOF) coffee shop is looking for volunteers to keep up their impressive fundraising effort.

The cafe in Royal South Hants Hospital is run by Chairman of the LOF Irene Davenport and a team of 56 volunteers and is urgently seeking help for the 8am to 10am morning shifts.

Irene said: "It's a very happy and friendly environment to work in. People who have problems, like having lost their husband or wife, join us and find it a great help in a time of upset and need, as we listen and provide a safe environment for them to talk about their problems."

Irene, who has worked in several roles within the hospital over the last 20 years, has asked for more volunteers due to some retiring from their roles; one of which will be Anna Simone, a popular member of staff who has worked within Southampton Hospital for 62 years.

Last year, the cafe raised nearly £82,000 for the hospital, which was spent on everything from equipment to toiletries, and has pledged a further £62,000 to the dermatology department for crucial equipment to help treat cancers and cut waiting times.

Without the help of volunteers, the hospital would not be able to raise these additional significant figures.

Along with the money made from food and drink sales, the cafe also sells an eclectic range of donated items, from clothes to paperback books and teddy bears, which raises around £150 a month.

Although the role is voluntary, you can have mileage and travel covered by the LOF and also help yourself to tea and coffee whilst on shift.

Irene intends to hold a presentation in the coming weeks to present badges and certificates to some of the volunteers to thank them and commend them for their work and contribution to the cafe and hospital.

The coffee shop runs a shift pattern of 8am to 10am, 10am to 1pm and 1pm to 4pm Monday to Friday and 1am to 4pm on Saturdays and the LOF asks for only 3 hours of your time a week to help keep the cafe going strong.

If you wish to volunteer, or would like extra information call the coffee shop on 02380 825685 or Irene Davenport on 02380 869357.