Swinton student George Whitehead can already speak six languages at the age of 22.
He is also fluent at interpreting what it means to care for patients at St Ann’s Hospice where he is a volunteer.
George admits he gets great satisfaction from his weekly visits to assist patients at the day care centre at Little Hulton.
He said: “I really enjoy coming here because staff and patients are so warm and friendly. It’s always busy but that’s the way I like it and everyone has a good word to say about other people.”
He was inspired to help after his grandmother Margaret Nicholls, from Roe Green, was treated for breast cancer.
He said: “Fortunately she’s recovered but her illness had a deep impact on me and I decided I wanted to help patients with life-limiting illnesses.
“It’s been very therapeutic and really helped me, giving me confidence and the ability to work both independently and as part of a team. There’s a tremendous amount of camaraderie among colleagues and working in a hospice is invaluable experience for a young person.”
George is close to clocking up 100 hours as a volunteer after enrolling for vInspired, a youth volunteering charity which has close ties with St Ann’s. Volunteers must be under 25 to register for vInspired.
George, who is just starting first year studies at Manchester University, speaks fluent French and Spanish and is also versed in Portuguese, German and Italian having learned languages other than his native English since he was 11.
Eventually he wants to become either a language teacher or a medical interpreter in a hospital.