Fundraising campaign for beloved community champion smashes target

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Fundraising campaign for beloved community champion smashes target

Campaign to honour the work of late community stalwart Leonie Lewis has surpassed £36,000 target.

Tributes flooded in from across the community and beyond for ‘inspirational’ Leonie Lewis following her sudden death in April 2022.
Tributes flooded in from across the community and beyond for ‘inspirational’ Leonie Lewis following her sudden death in April 2022.

A fundraising campaign to honour the work of late community stalwart Leonie Lewis has surpassed its £36,000 target.

Leonie died in April 2022 aged 66 after a sudden diagnosis of lymphoma.

With the target of £36,000 now achieved, (the number ’36’ symbolising ‘chai’ or ‘life’) her widow Howard has set a new figure of £66,000: £1,000 for every year of her life.

Established by the Jewish Volunteering Network (JVN), of which Leonie was a founding director, ‘Leonies Life and Legacy’ programme is currently supported by 113 donors and will promote volunteering and interfaith work in the community.

Husband Howard Lewis, who will address a JVN awards evening on 15 January in his late wife’s honour, told Jewish News: “Passionate is an overused word but Leonie was passionate about volunteering herself and encouraging others as she really believed that besides the obvious advantage to the organisations, the individual benefitted from the tasks they performed. We first met when I was volunteering and she was working at the Association for Jewish Youth, so I will never be able to repay with my efforts the benefits I received and continue to receive.”

A Jewish community powerhouse, Leonie’s life was dedicated to service. She was a trustee and council member of the Faith Forum for London, joint vice-president of the United Synagogue, former co-chair of United Synagogue Women, adviser to the Children’s Aid Committee and assessor for the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

A member of Pinner shul, she was awarded an MBE by the Queen for services to the Jewish community in 2017. Leonie and Howard have two sons and nine grandchildren.

You can support the campaign HERE

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