Our befriender Lindsey Fraser has recently left for Tokyo where she will be one of the judges for the diving at the Olympic Games.
The world-renowned diving coach/judge volunteered for us when the event was postponed last year to keep busy and help us with our mission to eradicate loneliness and isolation.
Olympian Lindsey, who has also competed at the Games in the past, explains: “This is so exciting for us as an industry to be back at a major sporting competition. I was fortunate to have been selected as a judge for 2020 and I am thrilled the games are going ahead this year.
“The Olympics are a celebration of the highest level of skill and sportsmanship. Although it won’t be the same atmosphere without the visitors, it’s still a joy to be there in person. I first watched the Olympic Games on TV in 1964, which were in Tokyo and knew then, aged six, I wanted to be an Olympian!
“While in Tokyo I will be maintaining my connection with the Communicare family by sending them daily updates and photos from behind the scenes, which the charity will turn into a blog and add to its social media.
“Everyone will also be following the progress of Southampton’s Tanya Watson who I train in the UK, but she will be representing Ireland for the games, and will be coached poolside by Damian Ball, who she also trains with in Dublin.
“I think there is such a special connection with the talent from our city and Tanya is also the first homegrown Southampton diver to reach the Olympic Games. She is also the first Irish female diver to qualify – history in the making!”
Tokyo will be Lindsey’s first experience as an Olympic level judge, after achieving every other Olympic diving role possible during her career to date. She has also represented Britain twice at the Olympics and competed at the Commonwealth Games.
Annie Clewlow, Communicare Manager adds: “It’s wonderful that Lindsey will still be able to keep in contact with us while she is away. Despite resuming her job as a Diving Development Officer in August 2020 she has continued her befriending duties when she can. It’s a fantastic boost to our service users to have a connection with Lindsey and get behind the scenes at the Olympic Games via her reports back to us.
“Befrienders provide a vital service to those in need. It’s been proven that regular phone calls make such an impact on both the volunteer and the service user, even if it’s just half an hour a week.
“We will be following the events closely to see if we can spot Lindsey and Tanya on TV, who we wish the very best of luck to.”
The calls that Lindsey and other Communicare volunteers make support isolated or vulnerable people in the city.