A local volunteer from Reading has recently created and gifted portraits of local members of the community, including key workers.
Marie, from Reading, has been creating portraits of NHS staff and volunteers to thank them for their services during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Marie, a SSAFA volunteer who supports the local Gurkha community, served in the WRNS before getting married to a Sailor and spending 20 years as a Naval wife.
“I began painting portraits for NHS staff when an artist called Tom Croft did a call-out on social media asking artists to paint the portrait of an NHS Key Worker. I did a portrait of my son, who is based at ICU in Huntingdon, and my daughter-in-law who works in the Blood Transfusion Department.”
“I then offered portraits to NHS key workers at RBH, as well as the Vaccination team at Emmer Green Surgery. I took two photos of nursing staff and gave them their portraits on my second visit for my vaccination. The response was wonderful, and they asked me to do a group one in oils.”
“Painting the portraits gave me an incentive to get up in the morning! It really kept me occupied.”
Marie has now gifted 38 portraits to members of the local community, including local Gurkha women. In her spare time, Marie supports the local Gurkha community as an English teacher with SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity.
SSAFA Reading provides support and guidance to the local Armed Forces community, including a weekly English-language session for Gurkha women.