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Scole woman's teddy bear project in memory of best friend

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A Scole woman has set up her third charity fundraiser in memory of her best friend, who died of cancer.

Dawn Goodwin, of Beech Close, has started a teddy bear project in the hope of raising £800 for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (Each).

After losing her best friend, Jane Jackaman, almost nine years ago, the 57-year-old decided to organise fundraising events in her memory.

Dawn Goodwin is hoping to raise £800 for Each in memory of her best friend, Jane. Picture by Mark Bullimore.
Dawn Goodwin is hoping to raise £800 for Each in memory of her best friend, Jane. Picture by Mark Bullimore.

The teddy bear project titled ‘Jane’s special bears’, will be her third charity fundraiser for Each.

“Life has been really hard for me and this makes it so much better,” said Mrs Goodwin. “It helps me mend myself doing nice things for other people.

“It gives me something to focus on and makes me feel a better person.”

The two friends first met in Stowmarket – where Jane later became a nursery teacher – in 1982.

“We hit it off from the start, because she was such a funny character,” said Mrs Goodwin, a mother-of-four.

“She was always full of energy – she didn’t smoke, didn’t drink. We were really close friends.”

Jane was diagnosed with breast cancer, which later spread to her brain. She died a few months after being diagnosed.

“The one thing Jane said to me was ‘how are the children going to manage without me, Dawn’, that was the only thing that worried her,” said Mrs Goodwin.

“She was only 48 and was a nursery teacher at Little Mice Nursery and Pre-School. That’s why I always try to do the event for Each.”

Mrs Goodwin, who works as a support worker, was inspired to pursue her teddy bear project after sewing little clothing items for her client’s grandchildren’s build-a-bears.

“I was sitting at home making loads of these bear clothes for Evie, Ruby and Grace Greenhalf and thought I would do it for Each,” said Mrs Goodwin, who worked as a childminder for 23 years. “I’ve already got 20 bears that I’ve been collecting.

“I wanted to catch the adults as well, so I will also be doing a draw.”

Her first two fundraisers, with the first one taking place a year after Jane’s death, were titled ‘Jane’s Dinosaur Tea Party’ and ‘Magic Mile for Jane’. They raised a total of £1,120.

“I wanted to use her name because I see Jane’s mum regularly and it lets her mum know that I’m always thinking of Jane,” said Mrs Goodwin.

“She is still struggling in life with the loss of her daughter.”

Mrs Goodwin will have a stall in Mere Street, Diss, on Saturday, November 2 and 9, from 9.30am to noon, selling her teddy bears.

“I think my husband, David, thinks I’m mad, because the house is full of bears,” said Mrs Goodwin, who also worked as a Marie Curie nurse for three years.

“He complained that he can never find his scissors because I’ve pinched them. There is cotton dropping off me everywhere I go.”

Anyone wishing to donate money or teddy bears, or offer their time to help Mrs Goodwin sew, can contact her on 07813351358 or via email at dawn.goodwin8162@gmail.com.

The draw will take place at The Crossways Inn in Scole on December 15.

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Local businesses such as Cannell’s, McColls and Poundland have pledged their support.

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