Saturday, 15 December 2007

The power of a friendly face.

Kevin and Nicola.

9.30am and the sun still casts a long shadow.

On Thursday Lenton Recreation Ground was covered in a heavy frost and by the time I left the house to catch a bus at just before 9.30am the frost was still lingering. More noticeable though were the long shadows across the park. At this time of the year the sun stays low in the sky so there are always shadows. A week from now will see the shortest day. It never ceases to amaze me at how quickly the seasons change. It really does seem to be true that the older you get the quicker life seems to move.

I did think the park was empty until I saw Nicola with Kevin coming towards me on one of their regular walks around the park. Nicola is another of Lenton's local heroes. She has been running a project for young people since we first got Lottery funding in the days of the old Lenton Community Association, long before it became The Lenton Centre. The first project has since been reborn in a number of guises so that Nicola and her colleagues could continue to access Lottery money. It is currently known as 'Activ8' and provides out of school activities for local children. Nicola and her colleagues have figured in a couple of previous blog entries. One shows Activ8 having a games day in the park during the summer holidays and the other shows them face painting at the 'Parklife' day in August.

Hopefully, the Government's 'Children's Plan' announced this week will ensure continued funding for The Lenton Centre and Nicola's invaluable work with local children.

As Nicola, Kevin and I parted in the park and went our separate ways I thought about Nicola's achievements and our passing conversation about digital cameras, but above all I thought about the power of a friendly face and a welcoming personality. I can see why Nicola's magic works so well with children because it works on a big kid like me.

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