Interview with Deputy Lieutenant Kathy Gore

PUBLISHED: 10:33 18 September 2012 | UPDATED: 21:52 20 February 2013

Interview with Deputy Lieutenant Kathy Gore

Interview with Deputy Lieutenant Kathy Gore

Kathy Gore is a fine example of voluntary service, working for many charities in Sussex. She took time out of her busy diary to talk to Simon Irwin

There is a saying that if you want something doing then ask a busy person. On that basis then one of the people you want to ask is Kathy Gore.

Kathy, who lives in Framfield, near Uckfield, with her husband Jack was High Sheriff of East Sussex until March this year. She believes in putting something back into the community.

When I asked about her charity work she said she had six or seven hats.

Her interests, in no particular order, are the Chestnut Tree House Childrens Hospice, the Friends of East Sussex Hospices, the Sussex Community Foundation, the Martlets Hospice, the Whitehawk Inn and her work as a Deputy Lieutenant.

Kathy chairs the Friends of East Sussex Hospices which will have distributed 900,000 to those organisations by the end of this year. She hopes that the group will become the Friends of Sussex Hospices, covering both East and West in October.

Were hoping that will make us more attractive to people who want to give countywide or for companies that want countywide exposure for their giving.

She founded the Friends when she became involved with the Martlets Hospice in Hove where she volunteered for many years and is now a champion as well as a patron.

Kathy never ceases to be impressed by the work of those who give up
their time for free.

Each hospice averages about 500 volunteers and they couldnt function without the help of these people.

Her hospice work led her to become involved with the Chestnut Tree House childrens hospice where she is a patron. She was due to engage in one of her other passions, running, in aid of Chestnut Tree House in the Littlehampton 10k race as Sussex Life went to press.

I cant begin to imagine how hellish it must be to have a child with life-limiting or life-threatening illness and to have to cope with their siblings as well in some cases.

She was selected as a Torchbearer for the Olympic flame on its passage through Sussex and was chosen to carry the flame past one of the iconic landmarks of the county, the Seven Sisters.

Her year as High Sheriff exposed her to the work done by the Whitehawk Inn in Brighton. Kathy was very impressed with the centres work on lifelong learning which tied in with her theme as High Sheriff which concentrated on helping disaffected young people. She is now one of Whitehawks patrons.

One of the aspects of the role of High Sheriff she enjoyed most was thanking volunteers in the county.

She said: Althought they dont do it to be thanked it is nice to be thanked, just the same. A survey last year reckoned there were 60,000 volunteers in East Sussex thats 12 per cent of the population.

They give 74,000 hours of their time a week which is worth 1.6million 80million a year and that was a conservative survey because it didnt count those people employed in public life like teachers that we all know go the extra mile.

Kathy believes that small can be beautiful and is keen to help some of the countys smaller charities which is one of the functions of the Sussex Community Foundation where she is a trustee. Since it was founded the Foundation has made donations totalling 4million, most in the range of 1,000 to 5,000.

As a Deputy Lieutenant, one of the band of DLs who assist Her Majestys Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex, Peter Field Kathy has been visiting schools recently telling the pupils about the monarchy in this Diamond Jubilee Year.

Summing it all up she said: I feel very lucky that I have been in a position to be able to do all this and to have the time to spend. I am very, very fortunate.

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