Considering the growth and reach of Josie’s Dragonfly Trust over the succeeding years since it was founded, in the year she died (2007), up until the present (this blog was created during 2022/2023), it was a privilege to have been able to help out in the earlier days, as this photograph of the big cheque from the Allendale Lions Club shows.
I’ve noticed that many of these photos of funding distribution seemed to have been placed in front of the Allendale Co-operative Society shop. Isn’t that so apposite, though, to reflect the cooperation among the Allen Valleys community in shared pursuit of a common goal.
Of the photograph, you just have to love the smiles, don’t you! Sometimes the Allendale Lions have been criticised for excessive self-congratulation, but on occasions when a big cheque was handed over, it felt like honest pride in our contribution.
Inevitably, as this archive of our social history is laid down online, in bits and pieces of blog entries, photographs and reminiscences, there’s a feeling of tristesse, of nostalgia for those times, which were so very good, so very innocent and earnest. That, at least, was how it felt, how it feels today, looking back.
One of the remits for this social archive, however, is the investigation of how organisations develop, how they mature and grow, and also how attrition affects us all, how such groups wane as well.
By the autumn of 2012, the club was embarking on its tenth year of existence, if you count its formative year from early meetings in September, 2003. The subsequent decade would test the capacity of the ageing members that remained.