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Charity seeks first ever volunteers from 30 years ago

A SOUTHAMPTON charity that’s celebrating its 30th anniversary this year has launched a search to find as many people as possible who were there when it began in 1991.

Communicare, which is working towards eradicating isolation and loneliness in the city, wants to hear from anyone who may have been involved with the organisation from its inception.

Manager, Annie Clewlow, who started working with the charity in 2008, says: “We’ve just a small handful of supporters and volunteers that we know about who were in it from the beginning.

“As we don’t have many official records from those early days, we don’t know about many others who were involved, and we’d like to hear from them. Then we can include them, if they wish, in our plans for our 30th anniversary celebrations.”

One of those who remembers the start is Margaret Timewell, aged 90. Margaret, who helped found the charity, and her husband Trevor, also 90, are now recipients of its services and are assisted by two Communicare volunteers, known as Communiteers. Annie continues: “Margaret was not only there in the 1990s, and is one of our remaining surviving early members, but she has been an amazing ongoing source of inspiration and support to us ever since. It took lots of people in the early days to help lay the foundations to allow us to achieve the milestone we’re celebrating this year.” Communicare, which is a friendly, neighbourhood charity, provides services that enrich the lives of lonely and isolated people in and around Southampton. These services are staffed by its committed, kind-hearted Communiteers, who volunteer and give their time freely. Among those who can also remember the early days are Eveline Adams and Linda Sharman, the daughters of one of the charity’s first coordinators. Linda says: “Mum actually signed up Communicare’s longest serving volunteer, Wes Philp and his wife Hazel, who has now sadly passed away. Wes is still active in the Communicare community and has been volunteering for the charity for nearly 30 years now, he’s a real inspiration! When I was looking for a charity to volunteer for recently, I immediately thought of Communicare.”

To find out more about Communicare, please visit

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