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Meet Savannah.

Savannah volunteers at Tenovus Cancer Care's Neath shop and gains confidence with every mannequin dressed.

Savannah walked into our Neath shop one day and asked if she could volunteer.

She was just shy of 18 and keen for work experience. A few weeks later she came onboard as a volunteer and hasn’t looked back.

“Before I started volunteering, I was really nervous, explains Savannah. “I don’t like being in crowds and big groups, and I didn’t have much experience talking with people. But being in the shop has really helped me with all that."

I’ve gained confidence as well as customer service skills. The shop is a lovely, friendly and a relaxed environment to be in and I’ve met so many different people. I can honestly say I have come out of my shell."

The shop sits on a corner in the centre of Neath and has two windows – one of which serves as a large display window.

Savannah does many things in the shop, from working in the stock room, to serving on the till and organising the shop front, but her favourite job is to come up with ideas to dress the large window.

I like to consider myself as having an eye for what works and what doesn’t. My manager, Karen, said she could see that in me as soon as I started. I have done many displays, and it works. It really helps to attract people into the shop."

A few weeks ago, that proved to be true as a man walked into the shop and asked to see a china tea set, some of which was displayed in the large window. 

It was expensive, so the rest of it was locked away in a glass cabinet. I was with another volunteer at the time, and we were so excited when he asked to see the set.

He then bought three vases for £400 and we were ecstatic. It was a wonderful thing for the shop to be raising that amount of money in a day."

Wearing heavy black eye make-up and Gothic clothes, Savannah cuts a distinctive figure.

Occasionally though she swaps her usual black for a favourite deep purple jumpsuit  she bought in the shop.

“I was sorting through the stock, and as soon as I saw it, I knew I wanted to buy it. It is covered in moons and astrology symbols which is right up my street. It’s so comfortable. It has lovely flowing sleeves that are nice and airy, and I can move freely. I always get compliments whenever I wear it.”

Savannah moved to Neath a year ago to live with her dad when she was drawn to the shop.

“It’s one of the nicest looking shops in town. The clothes are all organised in colour blocks and in to clothing types. It is just so organised and I’m big on organisation."

I felt at ease as soon as I worked in the shop. It is a very relaxed environment. I have made friendships that now go outside my working hours.

Also, my nan had cancer and so there is a personal drive to work for Tenovus Cancer Care. I wouldn’t want to volunteer anywhere else."

Want to give help, hope and a voice to everyone affected by cancer?

If you or someone you love has been affected by cancer, our free Support Line is there for you. Just call 0808 808 1010