I’m delighted to have met 90-year-old Audrey Steele recently. Audrey Steele was awarded the Citizen of Honour for the Borough of Eastleigh early this month.
Audrey has recently celebrated her 90th birthday. This award recognises the voluntary work she has done for the people in Eastleigh Borough and Brazil.
Eastleigh Borough Council recognised the excellent community work of two local residents, Sri Kandiah and Audrey Steele. The Council conferred them with a Citizen of Honour award at the annual Mayor making meeting on the 9th of May this year.
Audrey Steele is awarded the Citizen of Honour for the Borough of Eastleigh – well deserved for all her great work for the community pic.twitter.com/IbgifuNGKP
— Eastleigh Borough Council (@EastleighBC) May 9, 2019
Audrey was originally from Bexleyheath, London. She moved to Eastleigh in 1960 with her family. Audrey has two sons and two grandchildren, and one of her grandchildren is with the Royal Air Force, which makes her very proud.
I asked Audrey her words of wisdom. She said, “Make the most of your life and don’t give up.”
At 90, Audrey has some issues with her knees and legs, and also had a minor stroke six years ago, but she said she just “keeps going”. As a Christian, she said it’s important “to be happy in the Lord”.
Audrey felt very humbled getting the Citizen of Honour award. She said she was simply “doing something that I really love.”
Knitting for victory
Audrey’s fundraising is rooted in her love to help others.
She told me during the war she knitted scarves and mittens for the North Sea convoy. In order to knit, she first had to make lavender bags to sell, to raise money to buy enough wools for her to knit scarves and mittens in support of the war effort.
Yes – knitting for victory! Audrey could knit and she did her bit.
First Eastleigh Scout fundraising
How did Audrey get into fundraising in Eastleigh? Audrey told me her children went to the First Eastleigh Cubs. As the group needed a new building, Audrey with many people ran a stall in the Eastleigh market to raise fund. She said, in those days, Eastleigh market was a lot more vibrant.
She volunteered for the Scouts for many years and raised thousands of pounds for them.
Audrey also knitted clothes for new-born babies at Southampton General Hospital neo-natal unit.
Wells Place Centre
Audrey is also one of the first people to volunteer at Wells Place Centre, part of Eastleigh Baptist Church, when it opened in October 1998.
She has worked in the kitchen for the Eastleigh Baptist Church luncheon club ever since.
Orphanage in Brazil
Audrey has visited an orphanage in Brazil twice with other members of Eastleigh Baptist Church. The first time they helped to build a playground and the second time they bought a minivan to give to the orphanage.
Eastleigh Baptist Church raised fifteen thousand pounds for the orphanage and Audrey was a significant member of the fundraising team.
Many congratulations to Audrey for receiving the Citizen of Honour award. It’s truly well deserved.
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