Maesglas helper’s birthday gift for charity

First published in Gwent news

A COMMUNITY centre volunteer described by friends and colleagues as a “one of a kind woman” has celebrated her 80th birthday and handed over a charity cheque from the proceeds of her weekly bingo evening.

Joan Davis has worked at Maesglas Community Centre in Newport for the past 30 years.

A tireless worker, she opens and closes the centre each day and single-handedly prepares the hall for bingo each Wednesday evening.

She has raised thousands of pounds for charity in her lifetime, but her most recent fundraising effort — for the Noah’s Ark children’s hospital appeal — was particularly meaningful as it was inspired by a particularly special little girl.

Ms Davis said: “We managed to raise £500 through raffles and teas sold at the bingo. It is for 15-month-old Georgia Diamond, whose grandmother is a club committee member. She is such a brave little girl.”

Ms Davis handed over a cheque to a representative of the charity earlier this week, with Georgia, her mum Lisa and Newport City Council cabinet member Cllr Debbie Wilcox all in attendance.

And just before, she was surprised with a party by friends and family at the centre she loves so dearly.

Project worker at the centre Katrice Perrin said Ms Davis was pretty special herself.

“There is just no stopping her,” said Ms Perrin.

“She is unbelievable, and if I am half the woman she is when I get to her age I will be more than happy.”

Ms Davis called the party a “lovely gesture”.

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