By a Staff Reporter Sister Mary Garson's London League of Friends is looking for £40,000 to buy her fast-growing charity's 19th home for old people — the first to be sited in London.
Mrs Helen Davies, secretary of Sister Garson's London Committee, said they had raised £1,000 so far, but she was doing the rounds of such groups as Help the Aged and the Catholic Housing Aid Society to see if they could help in any way.
She is interested in hearing from anyone who has a property that could be converted into six to ten flatlets.
Sister Garson, formerly an educational psychologist with Sussex County Council, has founded one centre a year for old people since she became involved with the problems of three elderly ladies in Brighton in 1953.
She later founded the Sisters of Grace and Compassion, who work in the homes and selfcontained flatlets she has set up
all over the South of England, from Suffolk to Devon.
People who have experienced her work with the old have helped to start other Garson foundations in Ceylon and most recently in India, at Tiruvannamalai near Madras. About 300 elderly people now live in her flatlets, homes and other forms of sheltered accommodation in Britain.
Along with the sisters' work, the "Shalom" helpers — lay people of all denominations — have agreed to give some time to helping in her centres, some for a few hours each week, others living in for varying periods.
Mrs Davies said the specially equipped geriatric unit, opened last year by Bishop Bowen of Arundel and Brighton at Sister Garson's headquarters in Heathfield, Sussex, catered for the more incapacitated.
NThe building her committee hope to buy, probably in the Notting Hill area, will have a resident housekeeper in case any of those living in the flatlets needed help suddenly.
Mrs Davies hopes the building will also have a communal room open not only to residents but all old people living nearby who may like to drop in for a chat and a cup of tea.
Anyone interested in Sister Garson's work is invited to join a coach trip to Heathfield, a day trip which includes a visit to nearby Brighton.
Mrs Davies is organising two visits, the first on June 30, with coaches leaving Victoria Station, the second in August. Tickets at £1.30 each and further details can be had from Mrs Davies at 7 Westbourne Terrace Road, London, W2.