Everyone enjoyed chatting and trying each other’s food in such lovely weather

Everyone enjoyed chatting and trying each other’s food in such lovely weather

We’re really pleased to be expanding our programme of social events for our clients, many of whom are vulnerable and isolated. The first event was a picnic held recently in Kingston. We arranged to meet centrally at midday and then walk along the river to Canbury Gardens where we all shared dishes, many of which were homemade! Everyone enjoyed chatting and trying each other’s food in such lovely weather.

The picnic was, in part, in memory of ex-LEAH volunteer, Kim Hemmingway. Kim was a long-term LEAH supporter and close friend of staff member, Louise Gibson. Louise said “Kim enjoyed nothing more than bringing people together and helping them make connections. Kim originally introduced me to LEAH back in 2004 and encouraged me to join her in volunteering. Whilst tutoring, I received an email advertising a job on the staff team and have enjoyed 6 years helping local residents learn English and integrate into their communities. I wanted to do something in her memory and was glad to have the opportunity of sharing the picnic idea with Kim before she passed away in March this year.”

We are grateful to ‘Love Kingston’ and ‘Kew Village Market’ for awarding us grants which enable us to offer more opportunities like this to bring together clients and volunteers from different backgrounds and ages. We're developing exciting new volunteer roles to engage clients in these activities, which really help them develop their social networks, learn about the local area and practise their English.