“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”                                      Jeremiah 29 v11


“I love that verse, but I’m glad I didn’t know the plans He had for me – I’m not sure I’d have been brave enough!” says Dawn. God has put Dawn to work over the years, making good use of her gifts and talents at both ends of the generations. She has a great ministry with the young, through Open the Book, Brownies and Guides, and also with the elderly, particularly through her work in care homes in and around her home at Lanteglos, near Fowey.

“Children just soak it up,” says Dawn when talking about her work with Open the Book. She loves their freedom, openness and wonder and is on a mission to make children unafraid of church – and to make church less afraid of children! Her son, now a grown man, has the dubious accolade of being asked to leave church when he was very young for being disruptive, in other words childlike. Although they laugh about it now, Dawn works hard to make sure it doesn’t happen on her watch as church warden and through her work in schools.

She has also found a less boisterous ministry through her work with the elderly. “I’ll admit, I can walk in and think someone doesn’t have a faith, but then they talk and – my word, I have to sit down and listen.” She has learnt so much just from listening and spending time with the older people, fully aware that she might be the only person they have talked to in a while. She also appreciates the awe of being able to come alongside older people and talk with them about God, perhaps for the first time in their life.

Dawn jokes, saying that although she’s always telling people she’s special, she doesn’t really believe it, and that being singled out for this award, although lovely, has been hard to accept. “Life is crazy on so many levels,” she says, “I’ve needed God more than ever in these last few years, I’ve really had to hold onto Him.”

Thankfully, for the community around her, she has done so and God has held her close so that today she says, of the young and not-so young, “I love sharing my faith, there’s no better thing – makes me smile just thinking about it!”