Ex social worker and retiree, Carol Edwards, has rounded up the help of her local community in Checkley to raise a staggering total of £2,500 in just five months, for leading children’s disability charity, Newlife Foundation for Disabled Children. Last year Carol put her spare time to good use and set about mending broken jewellery donated to the charity through its unique recycling scheme. Initially starting out as a hobby, the social circle grew with more volunteers contributing, including a stop off from gold medallist paralympian Ellie Simmons. Carol held a jewellery party with the repaired goods, which was swiftly followed by larger sales, with the help of friends and family in restaurants, hairdressers, local WIs, anywhere Carol could think of: “Once word had spread about the Newlife jewellery sales, interest really picked up. I coaxed my husband, David, into mending and transporting the stock, while many friends including Pat, Shirley and Maureen assisted with the selling. Everybody loves a bargain, and what better way to do it than raise money for such a worthwhile charity at the same time.” Donated by high street stores, stock is donated to the charity’s Superstore for repair and sale, with the charity relying on the help of groups and individuals to process it. Newlife Foundation CEO, Sheila Brown OBE said: “Volunteers are vital to the success of the charity, consequently helping hundreds of disabled children every year. We have a successful Opportunity Centre that welcomes people from all backgrounds to volunteer as little or as much time as they like, and we are keen to get even more volunteers on board. We are very fortunate to have someone as dedicated and enthusiastic as Carol that has lent her time to the charity; and we are thrilled with generous amount raised.” Based at Newlife’s main site in Hemlock Way, Cannock, the Opportunity Centre is a new facility that opened last autumn to provide a space for people to volunteer and learn new skills in a safe and social environment. The Opportunity Centre is open for people from all walks of life including retirees, part-time workers, the disabled and anyone that has a flair for art. For more information or to find out how to get involved, contact Heather Campbell at Newlife on 01543 468 888 or 07980 259659.