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Community Connections is a charitable organisation dedicated to improving facilities and access at the Stour Connect Day Centre in Sturminster Newton. The Charity has been established to target rural and social isolation affecting the elderly, the physically disabled and those with learning difficulties.  With the dedication of our staff, volunteers and partners, we strive to improve the lives of those who need help within our community. Through our fundraising and volunteering we aim to assist in the provision of equipment, facilities, activities and services over and above those provided by statutory services to help our clients engage in rewarding activities in a supportive environment. Inclusivity is at the core of what we do and we set out to assist all those in  Sturminster Newton, Gillingham, Shaftesbury, Sherborne and Blandford areas. If you are interested in our services contact us to see what you can do to bring about positive change.

Meet the team

We are...

Andy Watson - Rheolwr

Layla Dayani

Charlotte Dooley

Cyw Tracey

Michelle Pratt

Jacqui Wragg - Cydymaith 

Debbie Parfitt - Gweinyddwr

Julie Greenslade - Gweinyddiaeth We

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Nigel Biggs, Centre Manager

“I am the manager at Stour Connect, I have worked here for 19 years and completed my NVQ in management in 2008 and have worked in social care for over 20 years.


I am passionate in providing a high level of consistent care to all our clients here at the centre. I believe that this can also be integrated into the wider community.


My wife also works in the sector. We have 3 grown up children. Outside of work I enjoy river swimming, football and walking my dog, Otto. “


Sheryn Biggs, Project Manager

"I am the Project Manager of Friends of Stour Connect, an important sounding title for helping with a bit of everything!  This gives a great deal of variety every day which is something I love.

I have worked in learning disability services for over 25 years, from hands on care and support to management within the residential sector and am thrilled to be able to bring this experience to my current role.

My husband is also involved in the sector and is frequently roped in to helping with the charity.  We have 3 grown up children, all of whom are forging their own careers.  Outside of work I love to read, trawl car boot sales and charity shops for a bargain, go for picnics and days out and am often found ‘helping’ in my daughter’s florist shop."

Katie Guy in our Café

Katie Guy, Trustee & Catering Assistant

“Hello, my name is Katie Guy and I help out in the café at Stour Connect. I have recently become a trustee and am very proud to be part of such a lovely charity who supports so many people in our local community.

My husband and I farm locally, we have three children, two daughters who have left the nest, and our son William, who is 18 and is severely autistic. He attends Yewstock College where I was a governor for 11 years.

My hobbies include cooking, horse riding, walking, singing (badly!) and meeting friends for cake and catch ups.”

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Anne Rich, Trustee & Tutor

“I am a Trustee at Stour Connect, and am currently running the Connect to Employment Asdan course with the aim of encouraging people who lack confidence, or opportunity, into work. I am a qualified teacher and have worked in both mainstream and private education for over twenty-five years, with a specialism in teaching post 16 aged students with additional needs. 


Community volunteering is high on my agenda, and I run a local Toddler group, a foodbank, and have chaired various charities in the area.  For fun, I love live theatre, and was involved in our local drama group until I stopped being able to learn lines! Swimming and reading are my main hobbies now.


My husband and I have lived in Mere for forty years and have two children and four grandchildren.”

Julie Greenslade

Julie Greenslade, Marketing Assistant

“Hello, my name is Julie Greenslade. I am the marketing assistant for Friends of Stour Connect. My job at the charity is to manage the charity’s website, social media platforms, advertising and publicity. My background is in graphic & website design, and website management. I’ve worked for a social enterprise organisation in Bodmin, Cornwall as a marketing assistant, the local museum in Liskeard, and have run my own website design and horticulture businesses, also based in Cornwall. I have also worked in care.

Outside of work I spend most of my time in and out of charity shops looking for a bargain! I also love art, nature, animals and enjoy listening to music.”

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Tre Day, Meals-on-Wheels Administrator

“Hi, my name is Tre Day, and I am the administrator for the Meals-on-Wheels Service and Lunch Club. I have had a varied career but mainly split between Career and Business Counselling & Sales and Marketing.


I have one grown up daughter and a 5-year-old granddaughter who keeps me busy! I enjoy fitness in my leisure time and swim regularly, as well as walking and enjoy being a member of the National Trust.”

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Debbie Parfitt, Volunteer

“Hello, I live in Sturminster Newton and have been involved as a volunteer with the charity for about 10 years and have worked in various departments including the office as an admin assistant. Currently I help out on Tuesday morning at the Stour Connect’s “Twice But Nice” charity shop which opened in late 2019. On Thursday afternoon I help out at my local Brainwave charity shop in Sturminster Newton.


I also played in a Panto with SNADS called The Little Mermaid at The Exchange in Sturminster Newton in February 2022. I am now rehearsing for the another play to be held later in the year. 

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