Thanet community news: Face of Europe winner, Birchington primary, volunteer award, Town Shed and more

WINNER: Caitlin takes the Face of Europe title Photo by Susan Preston

Face of Europe and the World

A Minster primary eight year old has won the title of Junior Face of Europe and the World.

Caitlin Goddard won the titles of Mini Face of Thanet and Miss Congeniality last year and entered the Face of Kent and South Coast pageant in May to win a place at the Face of Europe and the World competition at Disney last month.

Hundreds of girls had entered the competition. Caitlin was the youngest junior to compete and won overall.

Photo Susan Preston

As part of her role Caitlin has been raising cash for charity East Kent Headway. She has managed to raise £2630 in 6 months.

She is now looking to raise more awareness for Headway East Kent, attend events and support further local charities.

Thanet Lions

AWARD: Social Awareness Prize winner Klaudia Gjocaj

Lion President Steve along with a number of Club members were honoured to attend Remembrance services in Broadstairs, Birchington, Margate, Minster and Ramsgate. Thankfully the eather stayed kind for us.

Many thanks to all the ‘booters’ and shoppers who supported our Boot Fairs during the summer. Thanet Lions Club were delighted to present a cheque for £1745.22 to Mrs Anne Evans, Head of Drapers Mills School, this being their percentage of boot takings. This money will go towards the purchase of more books for the pupils.

Congratulations to our Social Awareness Prize winner Klaudia Gjocaj. Klaudia is a past Year 13 student at St Georges School and was awarded the prize for being an excellent role model to all students young and old in the St George’s School community. Especially in guiding them in making good choices and pathways whilst at school.

We still have a few places left for our Christmas quiz which will take place on Saturday, December 14 at St Peters Church Hall. 7.15pm prompt start. £7 per head. Please bring along your own food and drink. To book your place please call 0345 8339532.

We would like to thank the generosity of a Broadstairs couple for their kind donation of lots of soft toys. Being so close to Christmas this gift is most welcome and will certainly be distributed to those deserving that little extra.

If you would like to know more, Thanet Lions Club meets on the second Monday of every month at the Sir Stanley Gray Pub, Pegwell Bay. For further information about any of our events or you think we can help you please telephone us on our new number 0345 8339532. You can also find us at or on Facebook.

Puddle Ducks swim school

Baby and child swim school Puddle Ducks hosts a charity PJ Week every year, where the little swimmers and their parents wear their pyjamas in the pool to raise money for charity. This year, they have raised a fabulous £568 in support of Kent Search and Rescue.

The event is lots of fun for everyone involved, but it also teaches the children vital swimming techniques. In particular, being in pyjamas helps them feel what it would be like should they ever accidentally fall into water.

For many children it is also their first introduction to charity fundraising which is developing their community spirit from a young age.

Kent Search and Rescue is a charitable organisation dedicated to assisting the emergency services in the search for and rescue of vulnerable missing persons. Their volunteer members are spread out throughout Kent, and sometimes beyond, giving them the broadest level of cover across the county.

Victoria Rowley, co-owner of Puddle Ducks East Kent, commented: “Kent Search and Rescue is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 52 weeks of the year. Not everyone realises that they need donations to keep operating their free emergency service, so they rely on the support of the local Kent community.

“Many people can get in trouble in water where the KSR may well offer support, so it has been a pleasure for all our swimmers and their families to raise funds for this wonderful local service during our charity PJ Week.”

Puddle Ducks provides award winning swimming classes for children from birth to 10 years old. Teachers focus on creating a nurturing environment, which supports independent swimming for children of all abilities.

For more information about Puddle Ducks East Kent, please call 01622 236111 or visit

Birchington Primary School

On Sunday, November 10 Mrs Brown and Mrs Partridge accompanied ten children in the Remembrance Parade in Birchington. The pupils, all in Years 4,5 and 6, were the Spirituality Representatives for their classes. They walked with pride, carrying their poppy wreath. Once at Birchington Square, the children participated in the two-minute silence before our Year 6 pupils lay the wreath at the memorial. All children behaved impeccably and we were so proud to be part of this special event.

Birchington volunteer award

A Birchington woman was among 150 volunteers nominated to be recognised for prestigious awards organised by national healthcare charity Sue Ryder in October.

Sue Ryder’s annual awards aim to celebrate volunteers’ commitment and achievements, recognising volunteers who have gone the extra mile and made an outstanding contribution to Sue Ryder’s work.

Susan Evans was nominated for the ‘Creative Vision’ award for her outstanding contribution to Sue Ryder as a volunteer for charity’s shop in Birchington.

For the last 12 years Susan has created striking handmade cards, which she has then donated to the Sue Ryder Birchington shop for sale.

Susan creates these greetings cards at no cost to the charity, and in spite of ongoing health issues. The cards have proved a hit with the customers, some of whom travel to Birchington just to buy them.

The sale of Susan’s cards has raised over £5,500 over the years to support Sue Ryder’s palliative, neurological and bereavement care.

Rebecca Jane Harman, Sue Ryder Birchington shop manager said: “I wanted to take this opportunity to say a big ‘thank you’ to Susan for her unwavering dedication to Sue Ryder. Her efforts will have made a real impact on the charity – the money raised from the sale of her beautiful cards could pay for a Sue Ryder hospice nurse for more than a month.”

Susan’s cards retail at the Sue Ryder Birchington shop for £1.50 each, with proceeds supporting the charity’s palliative, neurological and bereavement care.

If you would like to volunteer or make a donation to support the work of Sue Ryder, please visit

QEQM Hospital League of Friends

Great fun was had at one of our most popular fundraising events of the year – our Fashion Show & Supper, which was held recently at the Winter Gardens, Margate and had a Halloween theme.

Grateful thanks to everyone who contributed to the very enjoyable success of the event including:

– All our volunteer models, amongst them four specialist nurses who work at the Hospital

– The six local stores: Laura Ashley, Just Jane, La De Da, Roman, Sainsbury’s & The Saltworks – who kindly loaned us some of their fashions for the evening

– (Margate Mayor) Mick Tomlinson for the music

The event raised about £1,500 which, like all the money we raise, will be spent on funding the purchase of medical equipment & amenities for the benefit of patients, staff & visitors at our local hospital.

For more information about the QEQM Hospital League of Friends charity please check out our page on Facebook

Margate Rotary Club

Loren LeFave (centre) together with Beverley Aitken and Jeremy Voizey

Margate Rotarians and their partners and guests recently welcomed guest speaker Lorin LeFave who talked about the Breck Foundation, a charity named after her 14 year old son who was murdered in 2014 having been the victim of on-line grooming.

The talk was extremely powerful and moving delivered with energy and emotion.

Despite Lorin raising concerns about the behaviour of the perpetrator and his influence over Breck, Lorin received very little external assistance. She identified that this was primarily through ignorance and a mistaken belief that boys couldn’t be victims of grooming.

Lorin established the Breck Foundation to raise awareness of on-line dangers and to promote safer use of the internet for children and young people.

Margate Rotary Club was founded nearly 100 years ago by the Rotary Club of London which itself was the first Rotary Club to be formed outside North America.

A party of 19 Rotarians attended the London Club’s weekly meeting and were made most welcome. The guest speaker was National President Donna Wallbank, Members of the London Club will be attending our Centenary celebrations on May 15, 2021.

For more information on how you could join our friendly club please email us on [email protected]

Broadstairs Town Shed

Wednesday, December 4,12.30pm at The Shed, join us for mince pies, mulled apple juice and cider, tea and  coffee. Luxury foodie hamper raffle, beautiful hand-crafted gifts for sale, all made at The Shed, 3 Oakwood Industrial Estate, Dane Valley Road, Broadstairs.

There is no parking, however we are on the Loop bus route which stops at the Cabin Café just around the corner from The Shed. Contact Debbie on 01843 867580/mob 07597 349290 or email [email protected] for more info

Also please come and join all of your fellow Town Team Gardens group volunteers at a gathering on Wednesday, December 11 at 10.30 am. To be held at Verreys, 19 High Street Broadstairs, we’ll all be discussing all the amazing work done to date, and sharing stories plus thoughts and ideas for the future of our green spaces.

Whether you are an existing volunteer, or would like to meet and learn more about how you can help, or even bring a friend who might too, we’d love to see you .It would be helpful if you could RSVP to [email protected]

CXK employment project

CXK has launched a trailblazing employment project to support unemployed adults in Thanet to find work.

Working Heads helps jobseekers to create a great first impression and access employers in an engaging way through video. As part of the project, job seekers are supported through workshops which take them through the process of creating a video CV. That video is then uploaded to the Working Heads online portal, which is accessed by local employers looking for candidates to fill existing job opportunities. The project is designed particularly to support those who can struggle to secure an interview with a traditional CV format, and links local employers with a pool of work-ready candidates who they might ordinarily never meet.

Through the project, CXK is aiming to support at least 600 jobseekers by March 2019.

Anthony Hollingdale, Project Manager of Working Heads, explains: “As an organisation, we have more than 20 years’ experience helping people find work. What that experience has shown us is that many people find it difficult to represent themselves well using a traditional written CV.

“Writing a CV requires a certain set of skills that many simply don’t have. It’s also really difficult for someone to get across their soft skills on paper. How does a person communicate their confidence, assertiveness, charisma, or people skills, for example? That’s a very difficult thing to do, and yet those are skills that might make them stand out over and above another candidate. The result, unfortunately, can be that some individuals have great difficulty getting that first ‘foot in the door’ – an interview. That’s why we’ve developed Working Heads.”

Employers, meanwhile, get access to an easy to use portal of work-ready candidates who they might ordinarily never meet.

Any jobseekers wanting to get involved in Working Heads should contact: Anthony Hollingdale, 07725 445477, [email protected] or visit

The Working Heads project is funded by the Government’s Integrated Communities Innovation Fund, which aims to tackle the root causes of poor integration by engaging people with their community.